The government of Palma district, in Mozambique’s Cabo Delgado province, has said that life has returned to normal in the region
- Out of 170 commercial establishments that existed, 91 are back in operation
- The state institutions are all functioning, except for the notary services
The government of Palma district, in Mozambique’s Cabo Delgado province, has said that life has returned to normal in the region and that most state services and businesses are now operating.
“The people feel safe, and traders are re-establishing their businesses,” Laurinda de Fátima, permanent secretary of Palma district, said, as quoted by Radio Mozambique.
Palma was the target of one of the most notorious attacks carried out by the rebels that have been terrorising Cabo Delgado province for almost five years, when on 24 March 2021, the insurgents invaded the district’s headquarters, causing dozens of deaths and injuries, as well as the flight of thousands of people.
The district hosts the natural gas exploration project led by Total, the largest private investment in Africa (to the tune of €20 billion), which has since been suspended due to regional insecurity.
According to the permanent secretary of Palma, almost all state institutions are functioning more than a year after the incursion. Out of 170 commercial establishments that existed, 91 are back in operation.
“The state institutions are all functioning, except for the notary services, which will also return soon,” she added.
Cabo Delgado province is rich in natural gas but has been terrorised since 2017 by armed rebels, with some attacks claimed by the extremist group Islamic State.
There are about 800,000 internally displaced people due to the conflict, according to the International Organization for Migration (IOM), and about 4,000 deaths, according to the ACLED conflict registration project.
Since July 2021, an offensive by government troops with the support of Rwanda, later joined by the Southern African Development Community (SADC), allowed to recover areas where there was a presence of rebels, but their flight has provoked new attacks in other districts used as passage or refuge.