State and politics
Mozambique has since been governed by Portugal 1975
independence from Frelimo, who until 1994 was the only
allowed party and has since won in all elections.
The 1990 Constitution guarantees citizens freedom of
opinion, meeting, association, opinion, press, strike and
religious freedom. The country is divided into ten provinces
plus Maputo, which is a separate administrative area. See ABBREVIATIONFINDER for how MZ can stand for Mozambique.
The president, who is both head of state and government
and commander-in-chief, is elected for five years through
direct elections with the possibility of re-election. At the
same time, Parliament, which has 250 members, is elected by
universal and direct elections.
Dominant parties in Mozambique are Frelimo (Frente de
Libertação de Mozambique, 'The Front of the Liberation
of Mozambique'), who abandoned his original Marxist-Leninist
ideology in 1989, and Renamo (Resistencia Nacional
Mozambicana, 'Mozambique's national resistance'), which
arose as a but became a political party and participated in
the first multi-party in 1994.
At most, Renamo received 39 percent of the vote in a
parliamentary election (1999) and has never succeeded in
conquering power. State-backed Frelimo gradually increased
its voter support from 44 percent of the vote in 1994 to 75
percent in 2009 and has remained the country's dominant
political force. A number of smaller parties have tried to
challenge the two dominant parties, but it has never
happened that more than a total of three parties have taken
office in parliament. Ahead of the 2009 election, the
Movimento Democrático de Mozambique (MDM) party was
formed, which in 2014 made its best choice during the 10th
with 8 percent of the vote and 17 seats.
Joaquim Chissano (Frelimo), president from 1986, was
elected in 1994 with 53 percent of the vote against 34
percent for Renamo's leader Afonso Dhlakama (1953–2018).
Chissano was re-elected in 1999 with 52 percent of the vote
against Dhlakama's 48 percent. The latter also ran in 2004,
but lost again to Frelimo's candidate, this time Armando
Guebuza, who received 64 percent of the vote, twice the
share of Dhlakama. In 2009, the margin was even greater: 75
percent of the vote for Guebuza and 16 percent for Dhlakama.
Signs of authoritarian rule emerged during the 1990s and
the contradictions between Frelimo and Renamo increased
again during Guebuza's time in power. The unresolved murder
of independent journalist Carlos Cardoso in November 2000
created a precarious atmosphere. Cardoso had since fought
independence for a free press and, among other things,
contributed to the fact that the constitutional guarantee
for press freedom is among the most far-reaching in the
After threatening to resume his armed struggle in 2012
and from directing his base in the jungle, directing attacks
on, among other police stations, Dhlakama again struck peace
with the government in August 2014. In the October 2014
elections, both Renamo and Dhlakama received stronger
support, but that was not enough. to a majority in
parliament or to victory against Frelimo's presidential
candidate, former Defense Minister Filipe Nyusi. Dhlakama
accused the government of electoral fraud, but according to
independent observers, the outcome of the election had not
been affected even though some irregularities had occurred.
In 2015, Parliament voted down a bill on increased
self-government for the provinces. After Renamo repeatedly
clashed with government forces, 2016 began new peace
negotiations. Dhlakama announced a ceasefire in early 2017.
The talks between him and Nyusi in 2018 led to some
decentralization of power. In May of that year, Afonso
Dhlakama passed away. His successor Ossufo Momade (born
1961) was defeated by a wide margin in the 2019 presidential
election of Nyusi, which received 73 percent of the vote.
Mozambique participates in cooperation in southern
Africa, primarily through the Southern Africa Development
Community (SADC), but is primarily focused on cooperation
with South Africa, whose industrial and mining center in the
northeast has long used Mozambique's capital as a transit
port. Mozambique also invests in tourism, especially for
South African travelers, and many facilities are owned by
South Africa. Mozambique has also allowed white farmers from
South Africa to gain land in the country.
Results in parliamentary elections
Voting and mandate distribution in the parliamentary
elections since 1994
|Mozambique's democratic movement
The judicial organization in Mozambique consists of
public courts with the Supreme Court in the lead and a
number of special courts for, among other things.
administrative and labor disputes. The legal system is based
on Portuguese legal traditions. The death penalty was
abolished in 1990; the last execution took place in 1986.
Heads of State