Friday, 30 October 2009

2009 Elections Mozambique political process bulletin

Number 28
30 October 2009 - 1400
Editor: Joseph Hanlon (
Deputy editor: Adriano Nuvunga Research assistant: Tânia Frechauth

Published by CIP, Centro de Integridade Pública and AWEPA, the European Parliamentarians for Africa
Material may be freely reprinted. Please cite the Bulletin.
To subscribe in English: Para assinar em Português:

Observers praise STAE
but criticise CNE
Commonwealth and European Union (EU) observer missions both praised the organisation of the voting by STAE (Secretariado Técnico da Administração Eleitoral), but issued harsh criticisms about lack of transparency and confusion on the part of the National Elections Commission (CNE), in statements issued this morning, Friday.
The Commonwealth and EU both used the same phrase, calling the voting “well managed”. They also praised the election campaign and the press coverage.
But both were harshly critical of the CNE for lack of transparency and for the confused management of decisions on the acceptance or rejection of party lists. EU team head Fiona Hall, a member of the European parliament, noted that the CNE had violated the law by failing to publish lists of candidates and by failing to publish a complete list of polling stations with the number of registered voters. The Commonwealth also cited this as “a cause for concern.”
Both observer groups were unhappy about the exclusion of parties from the election, both from races for national parliament (Assembleia da República) and provincial assemblies. Both cited the fact that in 64 of 141 constituencies only Frelimo was standing, and both said the was a serious limitation of voter choice.
“Confusion” around party list rejections
For the EU, Fiona Hall pointed to what she called a “fundamental problem”. The process around the rejection of candidates lists “was confused and not transparent”. It was not clear which parts of which laws were being applied, and there was “a climate of confusion”.
For the Commonwealth, Kabbah pointed to the “controversy” regarding the rejections of some party lists and the claims and counter-claims. He noted that “the nominations process would have enjoyed more confidence and credibility had greater transparency been provided”.
The EU preliminary statement points to “a general lack of trust in the independence of the CNE, due in particular to insufficient measures to improve transparency.”
Commonwealth: responding to predominant party
Reading the Commonwealth statement, Tejan Kabbah, former president of Sierra Leone, stressed that “the ruling party enjoys a predominant position. In order to deepen
democracy in Mozambique it is important to ensure that for future elections the process enjoys a greater degree of transparency and the playing field is reasonably level for all aspirant participants, thereby increasing confidence and participation and helping to encourage consolidation of the country’s multi-party system.”
Fiona Hall also noted the EU observers had seen government workers campaigning for Frelimo during normal working hours, and has also seen Frelimo obstructing campaigns of other parties.
The EU statement will be posted on its website:
The Commonwealth statement will be posted on our website:
Turnout in 2004 was 41%, not 36%
Turnout in 2004 was higher than the official figure, and this must be kept in mind when comparing to turnout this year. In 2004 the voters register was a mess, with many duplications. Names of people who moved and died had not been removed. In 2004, 3.3 million people voted. Officially there were 9.1 million people on the register, giving an official turnout of 36%. But in Mozambique Political Process Bulletin 30 of 27 August 2004, we estimated the real number of voters on the register to be only 8.1 million.
Now, a similar correction needs to be made to the register totals this year. STAE estimates that there are 160,000 duplicated names on the register. The mortality rate for registered voters is about 1.5% per year, which means that at least 250,000 electors have died. So the actual number of potential voters is probably 9.4 million instead of 9.8 million. Thus, if the official turnout is 43%, as predicted, then the real turnout will be 45%.
About 4 million people voted this year, which is still below the record on 5.3 million in 1999.There were 10 small party presidential candidates in 1994 and in 2004 there were two minor party candidates in addition to Raul Domingos.
Mozambique Political Process Bulletin
Editor: Joseph Hanlon (
Deputy editor: Adriano Nuvunga -- Research assistant: Tânia Frechauth
Material may be freely reprinted and circulated. Please cite the Bulletin.
Published by CIP, Centro de Integridade Pública and AWEPA, the European Parliamentarians for Africa
To subscribe: Para assinar:
In English:
Em Português:
To unsubscribe:
Also on the web: Também na internet:
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