Tuesday, 15 October 2019 22:58

 

Vote counting has begun in Mozambique after key parliamentary, presidential and provincial elections that President Filipe Nyusi said should help anchor peace in the southern African nation. 

Acceptance of the results of the elections will be seen as a key test of a peace deal signed in August between the ruling Frelimo party and its old political-rival, Renamo. 

Voting proceeded smoothly across the country, but security fears kept some people from the polls while scattered incidents of ballot-stuffing were reported. Observers in several provinces also said they were restricted from doing their work. 

The elections are widely expected to extend Frelimo's decades-long rule over Mozambique, and Nyusi is all but certain to be re-elected for a second term. 

But the peace deal has given Renamo hope of winning more political power in a country dominated by Frelimo since its independence from Portugal in 1975. 

Meanwhile an estimated 13 million people registered to vote in the nation of nearly 30 million.