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Celso's Nampula puzzle

Political tensions in Nampula suggest there's not an easy path to victory for Frelimo

Today’s front pages in Maputo. Photo credit: Faizal Chauque / Zitamar News

Good afternoon. Frelimo is already having trouble in the municipal election due to take place in Nampula city in October, as its chosen candidate, the current governor of Nampula province, wants to withdraw from the race.

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According to the Centre for Development and Democracy, Manuel Rodrigues never wanted to run for mayor of the city, and has submitted a request to the party to be removed as the lead candidate. But doing so would be a blow for the strategy of Frelimo’s campaign manager, with particular responsibility for Nampula: Celso Correia.

Zitamar understands Correia brought Rodrigues in as the lead candidate after fearing that the party’s original choice, Rosário Mualeia, would lose. According to Ikweli, a Nampula-based newspaper, Rodrigues believes the move would be a demotion from his current job, but he also fears he would lose — a potential humiliation that he is apparently not prepared to risk.

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