IT seems peace continues to evade Mozambique since the 1980s up to now. Renamo has been incessantly gnawing the central provinces of Sofala and Manica. As if that is not enough, there has been an upsurge in attacks by Islamist jihadists in its northern province of Cabo Degaldo lately.
By Cassius Sande, Our Reader
Mozambique is facing an insurgency by the Ahlu Sunnah wa Jamaa (ASWJ) jihadists who of late have been mounting ever larger, frequent and more daring operations even venturing into towns. The gory jihadist attacks have often resulted in loss of hundreds of lives and displacement of thousands of people.
The Mozambican army seemed to have been experiencing challenges in containing the rebel insurgency for some time and only started to officially acknowledge it last month. President Filipe Nyusi needs help.
Over the past year, the group launched a number of attacks in Sofala and Manica provinces, targeting traffic on the main roads in the two provinces. Should Renamo be allowed to resurrect as a military force, it will just like the jihadists in Cabo Delgado, throw Mozambique into turmoil and sow instability in the Sadc region.
Just like before, thousands of innocent people will be killed, homes will be destroyed, families will be displaced and property will be damaged.
Mozambique is on the verge of a gas boom, with estimated offshore and onshore natural gas in Cabo Delgado which could earn that country over US$100 billion over the next 25 years. Sadly, the jihadists and Renamo have other ideas — sowing seeds of destruction and denying the people of Mozambique the peace and development they rightly deserve.
Whether Zimbabwe should (or should not) deploy its tried and tested military in Mozambique is the big question.
More still, of strategic interest for Zimbabwe in Mozambique is the Beira Corridor, our major and shortest trade route — an essential gateway to the Indian Ocean and outside world of commerce. We have defended this corridor before against Renamo and it goes without saying that we will do it again if need arises.
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