Mozambican President Filipe Nyusi has revealed that the country is adopting a package of urgent and all-inclusive measures which will dissuade criminal and terrorist groups operating in the north, from luring youngsters into the illegal mining of mineral resources and looting communities’ livelihoods, forcing them into poverty.
Nyusi stressed that terrorism contributes to the destruction of social and economic infrastructures, and public and private assets, thus disrupting production levels.
He highlighted that the judiciary has not been spared by the terrorists. “Whenever terrorists attack a district the courts are among the first targets”, he said. “There are magistrates and court clerks who have had to seek refuge in neighbouring districts to escape the cruelty of the terrorists,”
Nyusi also said that the government will deliver, later this year, a package of proposals to the country’s parliament, the Assembly of the Republic (AR), seeking a review of the structural laws against terrorism and related crimes dealing with violent extremism,
While addressing the opening ceremony of the 2022 Judicial Year in Maputo, Nyusi declared that the move is intended to ensure an effective response to the growing challenges and threats. Since the first attacks by Islamist terrorists in October 2017, in the northern province of Cabo Delgado, the jihadists have murdered over 2,000 people. More than 800,000 people have been driven from their homes by the conflict.
“Over the last few years, important legal instruments have been passed to strengthen the fight against terrorism and related crimes, and the country enjoys the advantage of having a framework aligned with the core instruments of international law,” Nyusi said.
Nyusi urged the judiciary to continue the fight against crimes such as trafficking in drugs, people and weapons, illegal immigration, money laundering and corruption which may open the path to clandestine and seditious political organisations.
The President of the Supreme Court, Adelino Muchanga, declared that since the outbreak of terrorism, in 2017, 306 individuals (Mozambicans, Tanzanians and Iranians) have been tried in Cabo Delgado and Niassa courts for various offences, of whom 143 were sentenced to jail terms of between six and 40 years and the remaining 155 acquitted due to lack of evidence.