Guterres welcomes closure of last remaining Renamo base in Mozambique

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres has congratulated Mozambique on closing the last base of the Mozambican National Resistance (Renamo). 

“I congratulate Mozambique and its people on the closure of the last remaining Renamo base. I pledge the full support of the UN to the peace process,” Guterres wrote on Twitter.

The last Renamo base was closed in Vunduzi, Gorongosa district, in the central province of Sofala, on Thursday, more than 30 years after the end of the Mozambican civil war.

The ceremony was attended by the President of Mozambique, Filipe Nyusi, and the leader of Renamo, Ossufo Momade.

“The closure closure of this base shows unwavering determination by my Government and Renamo to no longer return to military hostilities and consolidate lasting peace in Mozambique,” said Nyusi at the ceremony.

The closure of the 16th Renamo base is in line with the Maputo Agreement for Peace and National Reconciliation, signed in August 2019, noted the UN representation in Mozambique.

The ceremony represented the end of the demobilization process of 5,221 guerrillas who remained in bases in remote areas and who began handing over their weapons four years ago, within the scope of the 2019 peace agreement.

This is followed by the reintegration phase, which includes the start of paying pensions to demobilized soldiers.

“We want to see, in the coming days, the settlement, the payment of pensions to our combatants and we appeal for there to be no more breaches in the understandings that we have been reaching,” said the Renamo leader at the ceremony.

The Front for the Liberation of Mozambique (Frelimo), the party in power since independence in 1975, considered the closure of the Renamo base, with which it fought in the civil war, as a historic milestone.

The closing of the last Renamo base happened 10 days before Mozambique celebrated 48 years of independence and with the country on the verge of a new electoral cycle, with municipal elections in October and general elections in 2024.