Democracy and Governance

BACKGROUND AND CHALLENGES

Mozambique has made progress since the end of the civil war in 1992 in building a stable and democratic state.  However, the benefits of economic and social development have not reached the majority of the population of 28 million, roughly half of whom are under 15. To meet the needs of citizens, government institutions must be more transparent, accountable, responsive and effective. Deepening democratic governance is all the more important to achieving stability and ensuring that economic growth benefits all Mozambicans as the country prepares to reap the benefits from an abundance of hydrocarbon, mineral and other natural resources.

USAID STRATEGY

Targeted USAID support de-escalates conflict by promoting peaceful and transparent elections; bolsters civil society and media capacity to promote public policy dialogue, transparency and accountability, supports the prosecution of poaching and wildlife trafficking, and strengthens the capacity of governance institutions to create an environment for broad based economic growth.

CIVIL SOCIETY ENGEGAMENT FOR GOOD GOVERNANCE

USAID provides technical assistance and grants to selected local nongovernmental organizations to strengthen citizen participation in the democratic governance of Mozambique. Civil society organizations seek more opportunities for policy dialogue and debate, and access to public information, particularly at the provincial and district levels of government. USAID strengthens the ability of organizations to advocate for specific improvements in the priority areas of biodiversity conservation, health and education services, and greater transparency in extractive industries.

MEDIA SECTOR DEVELOPMENT

USAID’s Media Strengthening Program (MSP) focuses on the development of a professional and independent media sector that promotes debate as well as transparency and accountability. The overwhelming majority of Mozambicans receive news and information via radio. MSP strengthens the quality of reporting and the financial and editorial management of commercial broadcasters and community radios, and connects news outlets in the capital with community radios in the rest of the country. MSP is consolidating content and advertising around development subjects for dissemination to community radios via online information hubs using web and SMS platforms.

Hands-on training for journalism students in a media lab allows them to produce real stories and learn digital editing. Established journalists receive training in investigative journalism on key issues related to, for example, the highly lucrative and emerging mining and gas industries, or to causes of social concern such as health care services or gender-based violence.

PROSECUTION OF WILDLIFE POACHING AND TRAFFICKING

USAID expertise is strengthening the operations of the Attorney General´s Office as well as the District Prosecutors´ capacity to enforce biodiversity protection law and block criminal networks from poaching and wildlife trafficking revenue. Resources from these activities fund organized crime and terrorist networks and erode safety and stability in Southern Africa. USAID provides training to law enforcement officials, prosecutors and judges focused on how to prosecute and adjudicate cases of transnational organized wildlife trafficking crimes.

Conflict Prevention and electoral system management

As Mozambique prepared for municipal elections in 2018 and presidential and provincial elections in 2019, USAID provided technical assistance and training to political parties and civil society on how to effectively engage with citizens during the electoral process.  Initiatives to increase government transparency and accountability within the various layers of the electoral process improved voter confidence in the electoral system.  Together these initiatives help to defuse triggers of tension between the main governing and opposition parties and facilitate a peaceful electoral process.

KEY ACCOMPLISHMENTS 2016 - 2020

Wildlife trafficking prosecutions have increased due to training and fortified administrative support from USAID, including a conference for law enforcement, justice, and local officials on removing obstacles to prosecution.  48 prosecutors received training on poaching and wildlife trafficking crimes. Additionally, USAID grants enable civil society groups to educate the public on diverse natural resource governance issues, biodiversity conservation and anti-trafficking and improving transparency in the extractive industry.

  • Grants to 12 organizations from diverse sectors of Mozambican civil society strengthen their advocacy to hold government accountable for policies and services in the public interest.
  • 45 broadcasters, including 27 community radios in the north and central provinces, improved news programing and planning for sustainability.

Last updated: December 03, 2019

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