On August 4, the leadership of the World Council of Churches (WCC) and ACT Alliance expressed concerns about the number of violent attacks involving armed groups in the country's northern and central provinces in recent years and urged Mozambique's President Filipe Nyusi to intervene and “put an end to these atrocities.”
In a letter to Mozambique’s President, the members of WCC, which represents more than 560 million Christians in 350 members churches worldwide and the aid coalition ACT Alliance say the northern and central provinces of Cabo Delgado, Manica, Sofala and Nampula in Mozambique have been suffering from “increasing incidences of armed attacks targeting the civilian population, commercial transportation, and properties” for the past three years.
Condemning the violence in the "strongest possible terms", those at the helm of WCC and ACT Alliance appeal to President Nyusi and his government “fulfil your duty to the people of Mozambique, for the protection of their lives, properties and livelihoods from the threat of violent attacks, displacement, compounded by the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
“We urge you and your government to intervene, ensure protection against rights violations, put an end to these atrocities, and ensure security for the affected communities, to intensify efforts towards peace and lasting solutions to the violence through dialogue,” WCC and ACT Alliance officials state in the joint letter signed by the interim General Secretary of WCC, Rev Prof. Dr Ioan Sauca and the General Secretary of the ACT Alliance, Rudelmar Bueno de Faria.
During the August 9 interview with ACI Africa correspondent, Bishop Lisboa who is a member of the Congregation of the Passion of Jesus Christ (CP – Passionists) expressed his appreciation for WCC and ACT Alliance concern toward the suffering people of Mozambique and appealed for concrete actions to save the hungry people displaced by the crisis.
He further said that the local Church has launched a campaign to seek assistance for displaced persons in Cabo Delgado.
“We recently started this campaign through Caritas Pemba to support these people. We are open to support at home and abroad,” the 64-year-old Prelate told ACI Africa correspondent.
In another interview, a Missionary of Africa Cleric ministering in Mozambique, Fr. Malachy Nwanalobi Oleru said, “It is frightening to note that the Church in Africa, seems to have been abandoned by the Western World to increased attacks by terrorists and bandits, most of which have Islamist undertones.”
The Nigerian-born Cleric added, “Nigeria, Kenya, Burkina Faso, Mali and more recently Mozambique, are dark examples of Christian helplessness in the face of unabated killings and its parallel conspiracy of silence from the Western Europe and North America who brought the Christian message to Africa.”
The Missionary of Africa Cleric who is ministering in Mozambique’s Archdiocese of Beira in the central region of the country explained, “When therefore, the World Council of Churches (WCC) and the Action by the Churches Together Alliance (ACT) chose to break the silence on the killings of Christians and other ordinary citizens, one can 'breathe' again with hope that possibly, in Mozambique at least, 'the knee would be off the neck'!”