The government of Mozambique, a resource-rich country in southern Africa currently grappling with a long-standing militant insurgency, has announced that it will conduct countrywide elections in October of the following year.
Mozambicans will vote for the president, legislature and provincial authorities on October 9, 2024, the presidency said in a statement on Friday evening, adding the decision was taken during a State Council meeting chaired by President Filipe Nyusi.
Despite being 64 years old, Nyusi is barred by the constitution from pursuing a third term. While his governing Frelimo party has held authority since the country’s liberation from Portugal in 1975, they have not yet chosen a successor.
In the previous general elections of 2019, Frelimo achieved a sweeping triumph by securing 73 percent of the vote. However, the outcome was contested by the leading opposition party, Renamo, a former rebel group.
From 1975 to 1992, Frelimo and Renamo engaged in a brutal civil war that inflicted severe damage on the economy and resulted in nearly one million casualties.
As part of a peace agreement, district elections were initially slated for 2024; however, during this week’s parliamentary session, a decision was made to postpone them.
Mozambique’s aspirations are pinned on extensive natural gas reserves, the most substantial discoveries south of the Sahara, which were located in the northern province of Cabo Delgado in 2010.
However, progress has been hindered by an insurgency led by militants associated with the Islamic State group in the region.