“We killed Nhongo – but new Nhongos will emerge if injustices continue” – Nguenha

“We killed Nhongo – but new Nhongos will emerge if injustices continue” – Nguenha
“We killed Nhongo – but new Nhongos will emerge if injustices continue” – Nguenha

Africa-PressMozambique. Mozambican academic Severino Ngoenha argues that the death of Mariano Nhongo should not be seen as a victory or reason to celebrate. On the contrary. Nguenha says now is the time to draw lessons, given that conflicts such as these may continue if there is no justice or sincere dialogue, which were what Nhongo was demanding.

Ngoenha was reacting to the death of Mariano Nhongo, whose demands, the academic maintains, concerned the injustices suffered by Renamo guerrillas, who fought for democracy.

“It is true that they were part of the construction of this democracy, but they did not benefit. There are parliament members, even from Renamo, who have salaries and good living conditions which the combatants do not have, but did not go to war. That’s what he demanded,” Ngoenha explained.

Another factor highlighted by Nguenha is the injustice in Mozambique “which became more acute, as no ‘real’ integration, something which was promised to the Renamo guerrillas, has been taking place”. This, Nguenha argues “has to be corrected, so that it is not born again”. The levels of injustice, he added, tend to increase. This makes those “wronged” turn to weapons as means to make their voices heard.

“That brought Mariano Nhongo into existence, and many more of them may still exist. So, rather than thinking whether his death will provide a [boost to] DDR, we have to ask ourselves the reasons why we always fall into wars. Because if we don’t, if the injustices continue, we killed Mariano Nhongo, but new Nhongos will emerge from all over the place, in s myriad ways, and will cause the country to explode,” Nguenha stressed.

Severino Nguenha argues that it is necessary to draw lessons and realise that this death should be an occasion for dialogue. It is necessary to move forward in the search for justice, dialogue and consensus, to prevent the country from returning to situations of conflict and instability.

“We cannot say that the death of Mariano Nongo is the end of violence”

For his part, expert in conflict resolution Reverend Anastácio Chembeze says that it is difficult to predict the future of peace and security in the country, as long as there is no compromise and dialogue.

“When we look at conflict analysis, we start to see the problem of lack of communication, misunderstandings and the escalation of that. It escalates into violence, and we cannot say that Mariano Nhongo’s death is the end of violence,” he said.

Reverend Chembeze added that this is an opportunity for Mozambicans to meet again and talk. One way to dialogue is to negotiate, to talk and develop the ability to hear and listen and understand the other party and compromise.

“The death of Mariano Nhongo is very sad and regrettable, as regards the conditions in which it happened. I am very sorry that this has happened, but the appeal I want to convey is that we have to be a society that lives on the basis of harmony and dialogue,” the clergyman appealed.


Julieta Zucula


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