Ossufo Momade, presidential candidate of Mozambique’s main opposition party Renamo ,said he “will never” accept “rigged election results,” pointing out that the denial of popular will has led the country to military hostilities in the past.
“If these are manipulated results, we can never accept [them] and we are determined to do anything whatsoever that the people indicates,” said Ossufo Momade, when asked by journalists, whether he will accept a possible defeat in Tuesday’s general elections across the country.
The candidate spoke after voting in his homeland on the Island of Mozambique, Nampula Province, Northern Mozambique, just minutes before 9 a.m. local time.
Momade showed journalists two ballot papers allegedly “caught” in the possession of a ruling party member of the Mozambican Liberation Front (Frelimo) as alleged evidence that the scrutiny is already being tampered with.
“I wanted to present this to you here. A citizen was caught with these ballot papers. This is no democracy here, this is what has provoked military hostilities in the past,” he said.
Ossufo Momade called on the President of the Republic and Frelimo candidate, Filipe Nyusi, to accept a possible defeat and to persuade his party’s militants to refrain from practising acts that jeopardise the transparency of the elections.
“[I am] Calling on my brother Nyusi, the commander in chief of the Defence and Security Forces, to respect what is the will of the people,” he said.
The Renamo leader also urged the electorate to “not be intimidated by the military apparatus” set up throughout the country, in order to ensure the security and serenity of the electoral process.
Previously, works at the polling station on the island of Mozambique where Momade was about to vote, were at a standstill for some time due to a physical fight between its members, local media reported.
Images from Mozambican television channels, broadcasting live from the venue, showed staff at the polling station throwing punches inside the polling place while voters crowded at the entrance.
The chairman of the polling station told journalists that he demanded the replacement of the delegate of the candidacy of Renamo, the main opposition party, accusing him of “causing riots”.
At the same time, a person interviewed by Mozambican public television station TVM accused polling station staff members of favouring voting by members of the Mozambican Liberation Front (Frelimo) over members of the opposition.
A total of 13.1 million Mozambican voters were on Tuesday eligible to vote to choose the President of the Republic, 250 parliamentarians and, for the first time, ten provincial governors and their provincial assemblies.
The sixth general election of Mozambique has four presidential candidates: Filipe Nyusi, Ossufo Momade, the leader of the Democratic Movement of Mozambique (MDM), Daviz Simango, and the candidate of the extra-parliamentary party Action of the United Movement for Integral Salvation (AMUSI), Mario Albino, the latter with a campaign limited to some points in Nampula, northern province.
The legislative and provincial elections see 26 parties competing, but only the three parties with parliamentary seats in the country (Frelimo, Renamo and MDM) compete in all the 11 constituencies of the national territory, which extends over 2,000 kilometres, plus two diaspora circles ( Africa and the rest of the world).