Mozambique is one of the countries on the African continent , being considered as one of the poorest and least developed countries in the world.
According to data from the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), released in 2010, 55% of the nation’s population lives below the poverty line.
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- The struggle for independence
- General characteristics of Mozambique
- Flag of Mozambique
- Population of Mozambique
- Economy and natural resources
The story of Mozambique is about the pre-colonial period, the colonial penetration and the struggle for independence.
In the pre-colonial period, primitive peoples (Bushmen hunters and gatherers) fled to the poorest regions in search of resources. In the colonial penetration, at the end of the 15th century, it was when the Portuguese commercial penetration, in search of gold and the acquisition of Asian spices, existed.
Mozambicans were the most sacrificed for slavery, with some being exported to the Mascarenhas, Madagascar, Zanzibar, Persian Gulf, Brazil and Cuba islands. Thus, colonial occupation was never peaceful.
The population practiced resistance fights, with emphasis on the resistance led by Mawewe, Muzila, Ngungunhane, Komala, Kuphula, Marave, Molid-Volay and Mataca.
In a practical way, the so-called pacification of Mozambique by the Portuguese only occurred in the 20th century. The oppression that existed for centuries and colonial Portuguese fascism resulted in the struggle of Mozambicans, in search of independence.
The struggle for independence
The national liberation struggle was led by the Mozambique Liberation Front (FRELIMO). Founded in 1962, FRELIMO took place through the union of three movements: the National Democratic Union of Mozambique (UDENAMO), Mozambique African National Union (MANU) and the National Union of Independent Mozambique (UNAMI).
FRELIMO started the National Liberation Struggle on September 25, 1964, and proclaimed the country’s independence on June 25, 1975. After the 1980s, Mozambique experienced an armed conflict by the National Resistance of Mozambique (RENAMO).
In the conflict, many people died and the economic structure was shaken, ending only in 1992 with the signing of the General Peace Agreements between FRELIMO and RENAMO. And in 1994, the nation ran the first multi-party elections.
General characteristics of Mozambique
Located in southeastern Africa, Mozambique is bordering Tanzania in the north; Malawi to the northwest; Zambia and Zimbabwe to the west; South Africa and Swaziland to the southwest; and the Indian Ocean to the east.
With a territorial extension of 801,590 km², Mozambique has 11 provinces subdivided into 33 municipalities. Its capital is Maputo and the current government system is that of the republic with a mixed form of government.
The country’s climate is tropical.
Flag of Mozambique
The flag of Mozambique has five colors: red, yellow, black, green and white.
Each has a different meaning:
- red – designates resistance to colonialism, the armed struggle for national liberation, as well as the defense of sovereignty;
- yellow – represents the wealth of the subsoil;
- black – symbolizes the African continent;
- green – depicts the richness of the soil;
- white – means the struggle of the Mozambican people and peace.
Ex-colony of Portugal , Mozambique gained its independence on June 25, 1975.
A member of the countries belonging to the Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries (CPLP), the Portuguese language is its official language. However, only 40% of the population speaks the language.
And although it was never a British colony, the nation is part of the British Commonwealth, a group made up of the United Kingdom and its former colonies.
Population of Mozambique
Mozambique has 23,405,670 inhabitants, comprising macuas (46.1%); tsongas, malavis and chonas (53%); and others (0.9%). These are mostly residents in the rural area, about 61.6%, compared to residents of urban areas, only 38.4%. The demographic density is 29 inhabitants per km².
Life expectancy at birth is approximately 50 years. However, the mortality of children under five is the 16th in the world. Not by chance, the human development index (HDI) is super low, the fifth lowest in the world: 0.284.
The religions of Mozambicans are plural, distributed in
- Traditional beliefs – 49.9%
- Christianity – 38.9% (21.3% Catholics, 12.6% Protestants and 5% others)
- Islam – 10.4%
- Another 0.2%
- Without religion and atheism – 0.6%
The malaria is one of the major health problems and death in the territory of Mozambique . Access to health care, drinking water and the sanitary network is very low, affecting the health and well-being of families.
According to data from UNICEF (2010), every two children suffer from chronic malnutrition, being responsible for about 15% of infant mortality. Regarding children, only about 30% of them receive exclusive breastfeeding until the first six months.
Due to the precarious conditions, it is estimated that there are approximately 1.8 million orphans in Mozambique, of which 510,000 are due to AIDS .
Economy and natural resources
Mozambique’s economy comes from resources obtained from fishing, mainly from shrimp; agriculture (sugar cane, cotton, cassava, etc.); mining; extraction of natural gas; logging and tourism.
The country has large reserves of oil, natural gas, coal, gold, bauxite and other ores. These have even attracted foreign investment.
However, agriculture is hampered by floods and extensive periods of drought, which end up requiring food aid for its residents. Industry is an important sector too, especially with drinks and tobacco.