Commonwealth Condemns Killings in Build-up to Mozambique Election

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Musa Mwenya, the team lead of the Commonwealth group observing elections in Mozambique has condemned the killing of a man who headed a local observer group.

Mwenye who is a former Attorney General of Zambia and acting chair of the group, called for a thorough investigation into the death of Anastácio Matavele in Xai-Xai, capital of Gaza province in Mozambique.

He condemned all incidence of violence and urged all stakeholders to demonstrate an unwavering commitment to peaceful and credible elections.

On the group’s arrival in Mozambique’s capital, Maputo, Mwenye said: “We convey sincere condolences to Mr. Matavele’s family and friends and urge a thorough investigation into this and any other incidents of violence.

“Our mandate is to observe and evaluate the pre-election environment, polling day as well as the post-election period. We will consider the various factors impinging on the credibility of the electoral process as a whole, and report on whether it has been conducted to the national, regional, Commonwealth and international standards to which Mozambique has committed itself.”

The five-member Commonwealth Observer Group (COG) will receive briefings from election management officials, representatives of political parties, civil society groups, the police, members of the international community as well as citizens and internal observers, then deploy to selected provinces to observe the pre-election environment and the vote itself.

Shortly after the election, the Commonwealth Group will present its preliminary findings in Maputo. Its final report will be submitted to the Commonwealth Secretary-General and made available to relevant stakeholders and the public.