Envoys Condemn Killing Of Observer Ahead Of Mozambique Polls

Mozambican Police (File Photo).

Maputo: THE United States, British and other international envoys to Mozambique have urged the country’s authorities to bring to justice those responsible for the killing of an election observer on Monday.

Anastacio Matavele was shot dead in Xai-Xai, the capital of south-eastern Gaza province, escalating tensions ahead of next week’s elections whose campaign period has been marred by violence.

Independent election observer groups claim 38 people have died in the run-up to the elections.

“We urge the appropriate authorities to conduct an immediate and thorough investigation to bring to justice those responsible for this heinous crime.

“The fairness and credibility of the election results depend on the ability of all Mozambican voters, candidates, and observers to participate in all phases of an electoral process that is safe, unrestricted, and free from hostilities,” the U.S. Embassy in Mozambique said.

The US Embassy urged authorities to “facilitate full electoral participation in order to promote the vibrant democracy that is an essential foundation for Mozambique’s peace and prosperity.”

The British High Commission in Mozambique said:

“Civil society, election observers and journalists have a key role to play in free and fair elections, and it is vital that they are able to carry out their duties freely and without fear of violence or intimidation. We now call on them to ensure that this crime is investigated in full and those responsible swiftly brought to justice.”

President Filipe Nyusi is vying for a second term against Renamo’s Ossufo Momade and two other candidates in the Tuesday elections.