HARARE – Rebel Mozambican group Renamo, whose leader earlier this year retreated to the bush after a near two-decade lull, does not pose a security threat to Zimbabwe “just yet”.
This was said by the director general of the Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) Happyton Bonyongwe yesterday.
Bonyongwe was addressing a rare press briefing ahead of the 10th Conference of the Committee on Intelligence and Security Services of Africa (Cissa) to be hosted by Zimbabwe starting tomorrow.
“Alfonse Dhlakama (Renamo leader) has relocated to Gorongosa his operational base during the insurgence that ended in 1992. We received reports a few weeks ago that there had been an attack on a police station in which four people were killed inside Mozambique. There was also an attack on a bus and a truck which resulted in one death.
“Renamo claimed responsibility for the police station attack. That is deplorable and we condemn it,” said Bonyongwe.
“However, the signals we have been receiving from the Mozambican authorities is that they would rather engage Renamo to prevent a real re-activation of Renamo and we understand there has been some progress.
“The authorities seem to be in control and as of now there is no threat to Zimbabwe. As an optimistic person I would say we hope the situation is resolved cordially,” the CIO chief said.
The Cissa conference which runs under the theme; The Nexus between Africa’s Natural Resources, Development and Security will bring 250 delegates with at least 38 intelligence directors from across the continent beginning today.
According to Bonyongwe, Zimbabwe, which will assume the chairmanship of Cissa, was one of the countries that spearheaded the formation of the intelligence organisation following the arrest on March 7, 2004 of a group of mercenaries who were en-route to Equatorial Guinea.
“For Zimbabwe the occasion is recognition of the country’s important role in the continent’s security and intelligence architecture. The conference will also focus on human trafficking, narcotics trade that has seen Africa being used as a conduit for drugs coming from Asia and the Americas.
“We will also try to find ways of fighting cybercrime,” said Bonyongwe.
Cissa is run by a secretariat whose executive secretary is a Zimbabwean Isaac Moyo.
Moyo who also attended the press briefing said the organisation was formed to assist African leaders to resolve chronic conflicts on the continent.
President Robert Mugabe will officially open the Cissa next Monday.