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Vol 45 No 25

Published 17th December 2004


Man with a past

Armando Emilio Guebuza (61), from Nampula, was associated with the worst abuses of Frente de Libertação de Moçambique (Frelimo). As Interior Minister during the transition to Independence in 1975, he helped to precipitate the chaotic departure of nearly the entire settler population of Portuguese and Indian origin. This had disastrous and lasting consequences for the country. In 1983, he oversaw Operation Production, when thousands of people deemed 'undesirable' were rounded up on the streets of Maputo and sent to remote Niassa Province, where many subsequently perished or joined the rebels of Resistência Nacional Moçambicana (Renamo). He was in the government which, in the 1980s, decided in secret and without trial to execute some Frelimo dissidents. All this is still widely remembered and discussed.

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