Community police attack RENAMO members

Members of the community police attacked and injured six members of Mozambique’s main opposition party, Renamo, in Ancuabe district, in the northern province of Cabo Delgado, according to a Sunday report on the independent television station, STV.

The man with the worst injuries, the Renamo district head of mobilization, Pedro Magawa, was transferred to the hospital in the provincial capital, Pemba. From his hospital bed, his head swathed in bandages, he said that a meeting held by Renamo in the village of Naputa, was broken up, after which the community police pursued and beat the Renamo members, and destroyed the local Renamo office.

“I lost all my documents”, said Magawa. “They beat me up and knifed me in the cheek”. He claimed the attack had been orchestrated by the Naputa village chief, on the instructions of the ruling Frelimo Party.

When STV visited the village, the TV crew found that the Renamo office had indeed been destroyed. Young members of the community police denied they had beaten anyone up, and said they had just stopped the Renamo meeting, apparently unaware that Renamo has every right under Mozambican law to hold peaceful meetings.

They wondered whether some of the Renamo members had come to Naputa from areas in Sofala province where armed Renamo men have clashed with the army and police. That, however, is quite impossible, given that Ancuabe is about a thousand kilometres by road from the Renamo base at Satunjira, occupied by the army on 21 October.

One local official, named as Cassimo Cassimo, said “we thought the massive presence of Renamo members since Thursday was strange. We don’t know what they wanted to arrange, but we are worried because we are always hearing that Renamo is launching attacks in the central region. We don’t want our village to be transformed into a den for Renamo”.

Post published in: Africa News

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