Mozambique. According to
COUNTRYAAH, violent torrents hit southern Mozambique in
February and March. Shortly afterwards, the cyclone Eline
moved across the country, leaving close to a quarter of a
million people homeless; several hundred perished.
Opposition leader Afonso Dhlakama threatened in late
autumn to resume the civil war to force President Chissano
out of power. Dhlakama accused the presidential party of
FRELIMO of cheating in the December 1999 elections.
Supporters of RENAMO staged violent protest demonstrations
in the country's central and northern part, killing 41
Assessors believe that Mozambique must review the
electoral law and the constitution in order to achieve
In 1990, peace negotiations began between the Maputo and
RENAMO governments. It became possible when a constitution
was adopted that opened up the establishment of several
parties in the country. The one-party system was one of the
arguments of the counter-revolutionaries for the
implementation of their terrorist acts.
In October 90, the authorities in Manica declared the
state of emergency. It was one of the most fertile in the
country but, like other regions of the country, was affected
by the drought that had already done away with most of the
crops. The drought was the worst in 40 years, causing
enormous deprivation among the region's 300,000 inhabitants.
As a result of the situation, Joaquim Chissano asked the
government for international food assistance. The country
needed over 1 million tonnes of food to prevent the famine
that was the result of the drought and war.
In November, the government and RENAMO in Rome signed a
protocol on the parties' activities. It was to precede
actual recognition of the rebels as a legitimate political
party. At the same time, the protocol should be the first
step to a genuine peace agreement. It also established the
right to freedom of speech, information and assembly, as
well as the conduct of elections.
An actual peace deal was dependent on the refinancing of
the country's $ 1.6 billion foreign debt. Prime Minister
Machungo declared that the country was the victim of
interrupted assistance from Soviet and former Eastern
However, RENAMO continued its terrorist activities, and
the election that had been agreed to hold in 91 was
therefore postponed. In March 91, the opposition party PALMO
(Mozambique's Liberal and Democratic Party) was formed. The
following month, a coup d'état organized by a wing of
FRELIMO opposed the peace talks failed. In August, Chissano
was re-elected at the 6th congress of FRELIMO, and Feliciano
Salamao was appointed Secretary General of the party.
At the beginning of 92, the new legislation on political
parties became one of the main barriers to progress in peace
negotiations. The Chissano government initially proposed
RENAMO to include a special section to guarantee the
political rights of its members, but the rebels rejected the
offer. The armed opposition also rejected the requirement
that there should be at least 100 registered members in each
province - as well as the capital - for a party to be