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Roads: getting a grip

The Mozambican government has moved fast to repair an important road connecting the north of Cabo Delgado province, but it will not be the last repair job it has to do in the rainy season

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

Good afternoon. The government, through the National Roads Agency, has moved speedily to repair the roof of an aqueduct supporting the N380 highway, which collapsed for a second time in two weeks at the weekend, under heavy rain (see below).

The original repair work was only ever meant to be temporary, as is the second repair job, but the bridge has been fitted with additional drainage channels, which should reduce the likelihood of flooding in future. Although it was only a minor crossing, it was important as the N380 links northern districts in Cabo Delgado province to the rest of the country. Work is also to get underway soon on vital repairs to the N2, which provides an alternative route to South Africa via Eswatini and part of which is ruined by huge craters (see below).

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From the Zitamar Live Blog:

Zitamar Mozambique Live Blog
The Bank of Mozambique cut its reference interest rate today by 0.75 percentage points, breaking a 15-month period of holding the MIMO reference rate at 17.25%. The MIMO rate, which is half way between the central bank’s lending rate and its deposit rate, now stands at 16.5%. Today’s decision is the first time the Bank of Mozambique has cut rates since June 2020, in the teeth of the covid-19 pandemic, when MIMO bottomed out at 10.25%. In a statement published today, Bank of Mozambique governor Rogério Zandamela said today’s rate cut was supported by the “consolidation” of the view that inflation, currently at 5.3%, would remain in single figures in the medium term. He also said that this could be the start of a 24- to 36-month easing cycle that would bring rates down to more “normal” levels. The statement can be downloaded at

💥 Conflict updates:

Zitamar Mozambique Live Blog
💥Insurgents ambushed security forces at Nahavara village in the Mecufi district of Cabo Delgado province yesterday, killing at least one soldier and injuring several others. The incident took place within 40km of the provincial capital Pemba.

With the rainy season in full swing, and heavier-than-usual rain forecast for Mozambique’s northern provinces (see below), we can unfortunately expect more roads and bridges to get damaged, requiring more repair. The worst of it is likely to come when cyclones hit Mozambique, most likely in March, encouraging flooding.

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