MP Mondlane’s plan to run for country presidency ‘natural’

MP Mondlane’s plan to run for country presidency ‘natural’
MP Mondlane’s plan to run for country presidency ‘natural’

Africa-Press – Mozambique. The Mozambican National Resistance (Renamo) views as “natural” the intention of MP Venâncio Mondlane to run for the country’s presidency, despite the fact that the party has approved Ossufo Momade as a candidate, its spokesman told Lusa on Tuesday.

“He’s a member, he’s a citizen, he’s free to run for any office of state. So we take it naturally that he does so,” commented José Manteigas, questioned by Lusa.

Venâncio Mondlane, 50, a member of parliament and the party’s candidate in the last local elections in Maputo in 2023, announced that he would start collecting the 10,000 signatures needed to run for country’s president in the general elections on 9 October, after he was unable to run for the leadership of Renamo at last week’s congress.

“Once he has taken a position that, in fact, is not compatible with party functions, he himself knows the procedures he must follow to do so,” the spokesman warned.

The leader of Renamo, Ossufo Momade, 63, will be the candidate of the largest opposition party for the post of country’s president, according to the decision taken by the congress last Friday.

Ossufo Momade had already run for the country’s presidency, with Renamo’s support, in the 2019 elections, coming second with 21.88%, in a vote that re-elected Filipe Nyusi as head of state, with 73% of the vote.

Renamo’s jurisdictional council confirmed on Friday the election of Ossufo Momade as leader of the party, which he has led since 2019, obtaining 57% of the votes at the congress held since Wednesday in Alto Molócue, Zambézia province, thus guaranteeing a new five-year mandate.

The congress was marked by the exclusion of Venâncio Mondlane’s candidacy for leadership, as he did not fulfil the requirements of the profile defined by the party’s governing bodies.

Mondlane still appealed to the courts to force the inclusion of his candidacy, but despite an injunction that was accepted by the court, the congress did not change the list of candidates put to the vote or allow him to enter the general meeting.

The re-elected party leader assured that he is counting on the other candidates who contested the leadership of the largest opposition party at the congress and that “nobody can be left out”.

“I thank you and promise to work with everyone. All the candidates. So that they can align with us, no one can be left out,” he said, speaking at the congress on Friday after the official results were announced.

“We all have to work together (…) From today, I’m going to work with everyone, I’m not going to discriminate against anyone. There are no adversaries here, no enemies, but internal democracy,” he added.

The data validated by the jurisdictional council confirmed Ossufo Momade’s victory with 382 votes, out of nine candidates.

A total of 710 party members were registered to vote at Renamo’s seventh congress and 674 ballots were cast, including 26 abstentions, four null votes and six blank ballots.

Renamo has been led since 17 January 2019 by Ossufo Momade, elected after the death of the party’s historic leader, Afonso Dhlakama (1953-2018).

Elias Dhlakama, the brother of the party’s historic leader, received 147 votes and Ivone Soares, a member of parliament and former head of the parliamentary caucus, the first woman to run for the leadership of Renamo, 78 votes, according to the data from the jurisdictional council.

Mozambique is holding general elections on 9 October, which include, in addition to legislative and provincial elections, presidential elections, for which the current President, Filipe Nyusi, can no longer run, as he has reached the constitutional limit of two terms.

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