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Mozambique's opposition party suspends peace process over election dispute

Mozambique's opposition party suspends peace process over election dispute

Mozambique

The main opposition party in Mozambique, the Democratic Renewal of Mozambique also called Renamo, has announced suspension of its participation in peace negotiations initiated by the government to end recurrent violence in the country.

Spokesman for Renamo, Andre Magibire said the party will now concentrate on electoral conflict.

The moves follows several weeks of threat by the opposition and comes after the publication of local election results held on October 10.

The results had announced the Frelimo ruling party as having won forty four municipalities, a decision contested by the opposition party which has also denounced fraud.

Renamo won eight and Mozambique’s Democratic Movement (MDM), the second opposition party, had only one. But Renamo claims victory in five other cities including Matola, the most populous city in the country.

Renamo accused the government of having ‘stolen’ victory in five municipalities during these elections.

The party said a resolution to the electoral dispute will be the only way it can return to the peace negotiations table.

Meanwhile, the opponents have filed an appeal at the courts seeking redress.

It could be recalled that the Renamo party denounced the Frelimo party’s takeover of the country from 2013 to 2016.

In recent times, two agreements have been reached between both parties on decentralizing powers in the provinces and integrating fighters from Renamo’s armed wing into the country’s army and police.

But according to AFP, relations between both camps remain tense as evident in violent incidents between their supporters during the election campaign.

This is the first time the Renamo party had contested elections in ten years.

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