quinta-feira, 3 de setembro de 2015

The trial of Prof Carlos Nuno Castel-Branco puts democracy at stake

By Xicuana

The trial of the well known Mozambican economist Prof Carlos Nuno Castel-Branco, who is being accused of "defaming" former President Armando Guebuza with an open letter published on facebook, is a charade and a shameful act. First of all, the person that really should be tried and sentenced is Armando Guebuza who has been involved in embezzlement, dubious contracts with mining companies and so on.
Which kind of court is judging Prof Castel-Branco if not one of puppets and opportunists? The letter of this honorable Professor tells nothing but the truth - it Stands for democracy, justice and freedom. Men like him is what this country needs. 
This case would be considered nonsense and would immediately be dropped in any country were the judicial system is not an instrument of political parties or authoritarian leader.

Now we hear that the public ministry is asking for a two years sentence for Prof Castel-Branco and the journalist Fernando Mbanze. Since when has the public ministry being allowed to meddle in the freedom of expression and demand sentences in this Country? Shouldn't those ministers and politicians, some of them incompetent and lazy lackeys, instead look after its own citizen well being rather than running this ridiculous case?

Very few outspoken minds of this country are loudly speaking against this trial and some well known international figures such as Graça Machel and Luisa Diogo that I have seen couple of time on BBC talking with Zainab Badawi about economy and democracy in Africa are suddenly quite in this case - doesn't democracy at home matters?
If this trial is being used to scare some outspoken minds to stay away from Frelimos's "gods" and "business interests", then democracy is at stake!

If Prof  Castel-Branco and journalist Fernando Mbanze are condemned Frelimo may come to face the same pressure and attention that Egypt already is facing from international community and that MPLA faced when they recently tried the well known Angolan journalist and activist Rafael Marques. Personally I don't think the party would be willing or naive enough to risk all this for the sake of one "defamed" Guebuza. 
I am not sure what Frelimo hopes to gain from this trial but one thing they should realize is that jailing Prof Carlos Nuno Castel-Branco is not a game but asking for trouble.

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