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Last Updated: Monday, 22 October 2007, 13:37 GMT 14:37 UK
No surprise at Chissano award
By Jose Tembe
BBC News, Maputo

Poster of Chissano before 1999 elections
Chissano was returned to power in 1999 before resigning in 2004

Mozambicans interviewed on the streets of Maputo on Monday expressed no surprise that former President Joaquim Chissano had won the Mo Ibrahim prize for good governance in Africa.

They said he deserves it because he played a very important role in achieving peace in Mozambique, and is now serving as a voice for peace elsewhere in the continent through his work in the African Union and the United Nations.

"He deserves the prize for his good work since taking office after the death of Mozambique's first president Samora Machel," said Telma Cumbe, a student.

Gaddafi and Mugabe should take the example of Mr Chissano who stepped down even though he had one mandate to run
Sam Gudo

"He helped boost the country's economy after the chaos of war," she said.

Sam Gudo said Mr Chissano, who stood down as president at the end of 2004, could serve as an example to long-serving leaders.

"Other African leaders like (Libya's) Muammar Gaddafi and (Zimbabwe's) Robert Mugabe should take the example of Mr Chissano who stepped down even though he had one mandate to run," Mr Gudo said.

There were differing views on what Mr Chissano should do with the considerable prize money: a total of $5m over 10 years, followed by an additional $200,000 per year.

"He should use the money in his foundation to strengthen peace and democracy in Africa," said journalist Lionel Muchano.

Economist Evaristo Cumbana said Mr Chissano should use the prize money for social development projects in Mozambique.

"The prize is a prestige award for Mozambique and a good example for good governance," he said.

Mo Ibrahim Prize: Your reaction
22 Oct 07 |  Have Your Say
Country profile: Mozambique
16 Aug 07 |  Country profiles

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