Humanitarian Mine Action in Mozambique
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Mozambique is a geographically vast country populated by
diverse ethnic and linguistic groups. While most areas are not heavily
mined, landmines and UXO still affect a large part of its population. The
author discusses the past, present and future of mine action in this
by Dr. Hildegard Scheu, Consulting and Training
Introduction and Background
The United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research, Geneva,
commissioned three pilot studies on Participatory Monitoring and
Evaluation (PM&E) of humanitarian mine action (HMA) during 2002. Fact-finding missions
were undertaken in Cambodia, Nicaragua and Mozambique1 to
assess the general state of play in humanitarian mine action programmes
and activities, including the current provisions for victim assistance,
and to explore the potential of applying PM&E techniques to humanitarian mine action. A compilation of
the history and recent developments in humanitarian mine action in
Mozambique is summarized here.
Mozambique is a huge country with a land surface of 799,380 square
kilometres and a long eastern coastline of approximately 2,700 kilometres.
The population of about 18 million (2002)2 is composed of
different ethnic, linguistic and religious groups. Mozambique is among the
least developed countries in the world. It has a gross national product
(GNP) of $230 (U.S.) per capita and a poverty level of almost 70 percent.3
According to 1999 figures, life expectancy is 39.8 years, the adult
illiteracy rate is 56.8 percent, and the primary school enrolment rate is
only 40 percent. HIV/AIDS is becoming a major problem with an overall
adult prevalence of about 14 percent of the population above 15 years.4
The traditional system of governance, which the socialist Mozambique
Liberation Front (FRELIMO) government sought to abolish after
independence, still operates in many villages, but legitimacy, functions
and power differ from place to place. “The level of respect given to the
traditional versus the government leadership seems to vary a great deal.”5
Therefore, it is essential to study and understand the governance systems
in place in a village and the complexities of community structures if HMA is to be effective and make an impact on
the livelihood of those affected by mines.
The Landmine Situation in Mozambique
Mine and UXO Contamination
Landmines were first used by the Portuguese during the liberation war
of the FRELIMO against the Portuguese Colonial Power between 1964 and
1974. After independence in 1975, FRELIMO formed the government and
followed a Marxist approach, which was soon violently opposed by the
Mozambique National Resistance (RENAMO) supported by Rhodesia and South
Africa. The civil war between 1977 and 1992 caused millions of people to
flee their villages and live as internally displaced persons (IDPs) or
Most of the landmines laid down in Mozambique were emplaced by FRELIMO and
RENAMO between 1978 and 1990. The government used landmines mainly to
protect important infrastructure and strategic sites. Minefields were also
laid along the borders with Malawi, Zambia, Zimbabwe and South Africa.
RENAMO targeted major infrastructure to weaken the economy; roads,
railways and power lines were heavily mined. Both sides have been accused
of having used mines to terrorise civilians.
The Peace Agreement that ended the civil war was signed in Rome in
October 1992, and a UN peacekeeping force, the United Nations Operation in
Mozambique (UNOMOZ), was deployed to oversee the two-year transition
period until multiparty elections were held in 1994.
Early estimates of the magnitude of the landmine problem in Mozambique
have been modified as more data has become available, and the landmine
problem is now considered to be much less severe than assessed after the 1992 peace accord. Currently, landmines no longer figure as one of the main
obstacles facing the country.6
Mozambique experienced devastating floods in 2000 in the southern
provinces of Gaza, Maputo and Inhambane, which killed about 600 people,
displaced about 200,000 and affected the livelihood of about two million
people. The country also suffered a major flood in 2001 in the central
provinces of Sofala, Manica, Tete and Zambezia. After the floods, it was
feared that displaced mines would pose an uncontrollable risk, but
fortunately, the accident rate did not increase. Mine specialists claimed
that mines might have been washed into the river and into the ocean and in
some rare cases might have floated to other areas, but in general this has
not grown into a major problem.
Most areas are not heavily mined, but the presence—or even assumed
presence—of landmines and UXO remains a significant obstacle to
development. “A substantial demining capacity will therefore be needed for
many years to come. However, the priorities will appear less pressing, and
it will be necessary to restructure organisational responses.”7
History of Mine Action
Mine action in Mozambique started in 1993. A preliminary plan of
action was developed in January 1993, but approved by FRELIMO and RENAMO
only in November. Its emphasis was on clearing roads to facilitate the
UNOMOZ peace mission, humanitarian aid delivery and the return of refugees
and IDPs. The focus on emergency-oriented objectives “resulted in a
failure to recognise the need for long-term demining in the country. In
addition, little attention was placed on the needs for comprehensive data
gathering and the establishment of sustainable indigenous capacities.”8
The United Nations wanted to establish a mine action unit of its own,
to be converted into a national capacity at the termination of the UNOMOZ
mission. But donors did not support this plan and remained committed to
securing demining contracts for specific non-governmental organizations
(NGOs) or commercial operators. The difference in approaches between the
United Nations and the major donors is seen as the major obstacle in
establishing a functioning central coordinating mechanism.9
Norwegian Peoples Aid (NPA) was the first organisation to establish a
demining capacity in Mozambique in 1993. Areas for clearance were selected
on the basis of expected refugee return; priorities were set by the United
Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), which also co-financed the
The Hazardous Area Life-Support Organization (HALO) Trust carried out a
first national Level One Survey of the mine situation in 1993 under
contract for the United Nations Office for Humanitarian Assistance
Coordination (UNOHAC). The survey did not cover the whole country and
recorded only 981 mined areas of the 1,761 registered in the National Mine
Clearance Commission’s database by early 1999. It also did not address the
socio-economic impact of landmines.
With the United Nations having difficulties establishing its own mine
clearance capacity, the organisation began in mid-1993 a tender process
for a $12 million road clearance contract. A consortium of commercial
companies was finally contracted in mid-1994. The United Nations’
Accelerated Demining Programme (ADP) started its activities in the
southern provinces at the end of 1994. At the same time a demining school
was established. After UNOMOZ withdrew in December 1994, the United
Nations Development Programme (UNDP) took over the management and
financial support of ADP.
Mine Action Coordination
Since the end of the civil war, mine action operations in Mozambique,
be they humanitarian or commercial, have been carried out with a minimum
of monitoring, coordination or planning at the national level. The
establishment of relatively independent NGO capacities in Mozambique,
which persists today, can largely be seen as a reaction to the slow United
The National Demining Commission (CND), established in May 1995 with
representatives from seven ministries, was supposed to coordinate
operations, maintain a national database, develop strategic plans and set
procedures for prioritisation. CDN, however, proved unable to develop the
capacity to set national priorities. After the development of the
“National Mine Clearance Strategy Approach” (November 1998), following
negotiations among the government of Mozambique, the UNDP and major
donors, CDN was replaced by a new body with larger autonomy from
In June 1999, the government of Mozambique established the National
Institute for Demining (IND) with a mandate to coordinate, supervise and
manage the cost-effective execution of a national mine action plan. Since
March 2000, UNDP has been providing technical assistance to IND designed
to improve the capacity of the latter to fulfil its mandate, which it will
continue to do until March 2003. A National Demining Fund was also
IND is a semi-autonomous governmental institute that reports directly
to the Minister of Foreign Affairs. In order to integrate overall
development priorities in the national plan, IND organises
inter-ministerial coordination biannually. IND has a regional office in
Nampula and one in Sofala province.
A National Mine Action Plan, based on the results of the Landmine
Impact Survey (LIS), was formulated in November 2001.11 The
plan covers a period of five years (2002-2006), with subsequent annual work
plans scheduled. UNDP and the donors hope that the national plan will
enhance and improve the coordination and prioritisation of operations. The
Mine Action Plan recognizes the need for “aggressive and sustained Mine
Risk Education and marking campaigns to be re-launched”12 based
on the Program for the Prevention of Mine Accidents (PEPAM), which was
executed by Handicap International (HI) in cooperation with the government
between 1995 and 2001. The Plan also affirms IND’s coordinating role “to
develop a coherent and coordinated national Survivor and Victim Assistance
Policy and Program that adopts an integrated long-term approach to the
plight of victims and survivors.”13 The responsibility for
Survivor and Victim Assistance is shared between the Ministry of Health (MINSAU) and the Ministry for Women and the Coordination of Social Action
Mozambique Landmine Impact Survey (2001)
The Mozambique Landmine Impact Survey (MLIS) was performed between
January 1999 and August 2001 on behalf of the mine-action authorities of
the government of Mozambique. Funding ($2.2 million) was provided by the
Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) as part of the Canadian
Mine Action Programme in Mozambique.
The principal findings were as follows:14
- Landmines affect all 10 provinces of Mozambique and 123 out of 128
- At least 1.5 million persons, representing no less than nine percent
of the national population in 1997, are affected by landmines.
- Of the landmine-affected communities, 768 are classified as rural;
however, 23 urban communities, including three with more than 30,000
inhabitants are also affected.
- A total of 1,374 Suspected Mined Areas (SMAs) were identified. They
cover an estimated 562 square kilometres. Some 41 percent cover areas of
less than 1,000 square metres and less than five percent are larger than
one square kilometre.
- Nine years after the end of the hostilities, landmine accidents
still occur: at least 172 of the total of 2,145 landmine victims
recorded during the MLIS had come to harm during the two years preceding
- SMAs most frequently impact agricultural land, roads and
non-agricultural land used for hunting, gathering firewood, and other
economic and cultural purposes. Blocked access to drinking water due to
SMAs is less frequent, but it nonetheless has a serious impact.
- Drawing on the Mine Impact Score (MIS), 20 communities with 36,000
inhabitants are classified as high-impact, 164 communities with 393,000
inhabitants are classified as medium-impact, and 607 communities with
1.1 million inhabitants are classified as low-impact.
This classification is used for priority setting for Technical Surveys
(Survey II) and clearance operations in the Five-Year National Mine Action
The MIS is a standardized ranking instrument approved by the Survey
Working Group. It reflects three aspects of the mine situation as it
affects a given community:
Landmine Victim Data
- The types of landmines, UXO and munitions
- The categories of land, infrastructure and service areas to which
landmines or UXO are blocking access
- The number of victims of landmines or UXO in the two years preceding
the group interviews of the (LIS)15
Reliable data on mine victims is not available. Compared to other
mine-affected countries, the numbers are comparatively low and definitely
declining over time. A study carried out by HI in 1993 found that 50–60
percent of the mine accidents were fatal because the victims lacked
(rapid) access to health services.
In 1996, HI began the systematic collecting of data on mine and UXO
accidents under its Project of National Coordination of Educational
Activities for the Population to Prevent Mine Accidents (PEPAM).16
Between 1996 and 2000, 564 victims were recorded, specifically 309 men, 84
women and 171 children under 15 years old. Sixty-seven percent of all
accidents occurred in the provinces of Maputo, Inhambane and Zambézia, and
only seven percent in the northern provinces of Nampula, Niassa and Cabo
Delgado. The majority of accidents occurred while the victims were engaged
in subsistence activities. The fact that men constitute the majority of
the victims may be explained by their greater involvement in economic
activities like farming, hunting and transportation. An additional
hypothesis is that there is also an underreporting bias in the case of
women. Children become victims mainly either as a result of manipulating
grenades, ammunition and other UXO or parts thereof or when helping with
subsistence tasks such as herding animals, collecting firewood, or
harvesting and hunting. The study concluded that continued mine risk
reduction education (MRRE) is important especially for making children
aware of the dangers of mines and UXO.17
Of the 1,729 communities polled by the LIS,18 791 identified
themselves as mine-affected. Of these, 429 communities reported a total of
2,145 victims since 1964, the start of the independence struggle. This
total must be considered a minimum, since 31 communities reported “many”
victims but could not give even an approximate estimate. Generally, as the
number of mine victims is low in both absolute and relative terms, their
medical, economical, social and psychological needs do not figure
prominently in social programmes in Mozambique.
The Socio-Economic Impact of Mines
While the victim rate is used as a major indicator of the
socio-economic impact of mines, other aspects of impact have only recently
begun to be explored in more detail in Mozambique. Ananda S. Millard from
the Assistance to Mine-Affected Communities (AMAC) Project at the
International Peace Research Institute of Oslo (PRIO) conducted an impact
study in three mine-affected communities in Mozambique in 2000.19
Mine clearance operators work on the assumption that the physical
removal of mines will have an “automatic impact,” which is not always the
case. Also, there may sometimes be negative effects. In order to analyse
the possible impact, operators have to find answers to a number of
questions, such as: How will the resources freed by demining affect the
distribution of wealth in a community? How do mines affect power
relationships among the population? Who will benefit from demining?
Operators should establish knowledge of land rights, land ownership and
local land tenure systems prior to clearance. Similarly, knowledge and
understanding of local relations and local leadership structures is
essential, as local leadership is not standardised across communities.
Respecting the authority (or authorities) in the village and building
relationships with the community is a precondition for maximising impact.
“The broad issue of community relationships is closely linked to the more
special issue of confidence in clearance.”20 Confidence
building is a process rather than an event. Millard found that in many
cases, the population did not use the cleared land immediately. Instead it
takes a long time before somebody starts using the area. When no accident
happens, other people might follow. It “seems that this is often linked to
confidence in clearance.”21 Clearing a minefield according to
existing technical standards is simply not good enough. Unless the areas
are trusted and taken into use, the operation has failed.
The ultimate objective of humanitarian mine clearance is making an
impact on people’s livelihoods. Millard and Harpviken argue for the
necessity to follow-up project areas regularly after project completion in
order to be able to evaluate the long-term impact of demining.
Many mine-affected communities have developed coping strategies to deal
with the situation that certain resources cannot be used. If the land
cleared is not of vital importance to people, a high level of confidence
is needed for them to use that land. “For agencies, it is essential to
know the degree to which affected people are dependent upon the resource
that is being freed through demining.”22
The Capirizanje case study illustrates the potentially distorting
consequences of failing to consider the full impact of a clearance. The
intended objective of the clearance at Capirizanje was to facilitate the
return of refugees that would pass through the area and to reduce the
accident potential. The actual result, however, was that many returning
refugees decided to settle in the newly cleared area instead of just
passing through. If the operators had tried to understand the perspectives
of those being affected by the operation, this impact could have been
foreseen. Operators need to be able to identify the impact that an
operation will have for the local population.
In the spring of 2001, Ananda Millard also carried out a pilot study in
Manica province using the community study approach. The pilot study used
information from the CIDC LIS to identify nine communities as sites for
the studies. The two high-impact communities and seven medium-impact ones
(picked from a larger number of medium-impact communities in Manica
province) were selected. None of these nine communities had previously
undergone a technical survey.
Ananda Millard first trained 10 local NPA staff in the “philosophy” of
impact assessment and impact maximising, in the use of methodological
tools and in data analysis and report writing. Group interviews, open
interviews with key locals and surveys were used as the primary methods,
complemented by a review of secondary documents (when available) and
participatory observations during the field work. Three teams were formed
and each conducted three community studies each.
Only one village out of nine, which was close to a minefield at the
Zimbabwean border, had suffered a number of accidents involving civilians
in the recent past. Some villages reported accidents immediately after the
war, but not in recent years, which can be seen as an indication that
people had identified the locations of mines and UXO and knew to avoid
those areas. There was no shortage of cultivable land, and subsistence
activities like hunting, fishing or charcoal production were not prevented
by the presence of mines. Consequently, none of these eight villages
identified demining as their chief priority in regards to external
assistance. Nevertheless, all villages expressed the wish to host a
demining agency, because of the positive side effects of hosting an HMA
agency, such as the improvement of roads and transport availability.
The community study approach has proved to be an important tool for
setting priorities and is particularly relevant for the implementation
phase of demining projects.
As Millard and Harpviken note, “In a country like Mozambique, where the
majority of tasks have only a micro-level impact, where the number of
accidents is rarely an accurate indication of impact level, and where
communities have largely developed alternatives to using mined areas, the
community study approach is very useful in the identification of
priorities. Moreover, the need to ensure that impact materializes also
requires a clear understanding of how the community functions and how
operators might best adapt their work to suit a particular village. On
this basis, the community study approach seemed an appropriate tool to
fulfil NPA’s needs.”23
The study also argues that, given the financial constraints for mine
clearance in the years to come, it is of crucial importance to consider
economic and social impact in setting priorities for demining and that
alternatives to the removal of mines also be explored in order to support
the development of communities.
From 1992 to 2000, a total of 200,169,636 square metres was cleared,
including 60,821,630 square metres of land, 68,323,951 kilometres of road,
68,813,455 square metres of power line conductors and 2,260,000 square
metres of railway lines. A total of 71,476 anti-personnel mines, 538
anti-tank mines and 34,386 UXO were removed and destroyed.
In 2001, four major humanitarian organisations were operating in
Mozambique: ADP, NPA, HALO Trust and HI. One distinctive feature of mine
action in Mozambique has been the extent of commercial involvement. By
1997, as much as 45 percent of the total funding had gone to different
commercial companies. 24
Accelerated Demining Programme
After the civil war, UNOMOZ initiated ADP, and demobilised soldiers
from both sides were trained as deminers. When the peacekeeping mission
ended in 1995, ADP became a UNDP project. Within the UN system, UNDP is
responsible for “addressing the socio-economic consequences of landmine
contamination and for supporting national/local capacity building” as well
as “for the development of integrated, sustainable national mine action
At present, ADP is undergoing transformation into an independent
national NGO. UNDP will continue to mobilise funds for ADP, but upon
completion of ADP’s registration as an NGO, donors may choose to fund the
ADP operates in the three southern provinces of Maputo, Gaza and
Inhambane. Its annual budget is approximately $4 million. ADP employs
approximately 500 Mozambican nationals and five international advisers,
who are responsible for management, operations and quality assurance.
The field operations consist of 10 manual demining platoons, two
independent demining sections for smaller clearance tasks, four survey
teams and a mine-detection dog team. The Finnish Flail Team provides a
Mechanically Assisted Mine Clearance capability. The demining platoons are
capable of operating in small groups that rapidly respond to priority
tasks. The Mine Clearance Training Wing of ADP runs a Demining Training
School in Moamba near Maputo, which supplies technical demining training
(e.g. the use of specific mine detectors suited for very highly
contaminated soils), refresher training, and survey courses for survey
team commanders. Deminers from NPA and HALO Trust were also trained here.
Norwegian People’s Aid
NPA operates in the central provinces. NPA employs approximately 570
staff and uses both manual demining units (nine) and mine detection dogs
(about 30). It has a training field for dogs and Mozambican dog handlers.
One objective of the clearance project is to encourage maximum local
participation in fighting the landmine problem in an environmentally
conscious manner. In areas where demining is undertaken, NPA also
cooperates with Mozambican government agencies to provide community and
primary health care services.
NPA cooperated with the AMAC project (based at PRIO) in the Manica
pilot study mentioned earlier. After the AMAC training in the community
studies approach, NPA identified a team of three trainees to create an
impact assessment unit. The goal of this unit is “to provide
NPA-Mozambique Mine Action Unit with information on socio-economic impact
at the micro-level.”26
HALO Trust operates in the northern provinces of Cabo Delgado, Niassa,
Nampula and Zambézia. In 2000, HALO had 125 employees and a budget of
Priorities for clearance are set in coordination with the respective
provincial governor, who gives his priority ranking to a list with
surveyed areas given by HALO, which is then compared against HALO’s own
ranking. A final decision is made jointly. A socio-economic impact
assessment prior to operations is not performed.
HALO’s “simple mission statement—getting mines out of the ground, now”28
seems to be reflected in the way it operates: establishing communication,
creating rapport and building confidence with the community in proximity
of the clearance operation is not an explicit part of their mission.29
Handicap International (HI)
In 1997, HI started its Inhambane Mine Clearance Project (IMCP) in
Inhambane province. It recruited and trained four teams of 36 deminers. In
2001, HI employed four teams of 12 deminers each, one team of 22 deminers,
and one team of eight people for technical surveys. It also hires dogs
with their handlers from South Africa when needed. Efforts are
concentrated on those small areas that are in close proximity to
settlements in order to meet the needs of local, district and provincial
populations. “Proximity demining” also refers to the close contact
maintained between the demining teams and the affected population.
HI selects potential sites for demining on the basis of priority, local
needs, immediate value to local communities, local plans, potential
rehabilitation funding, minefield size and input from other organisations.
Priorities are set in collaboration with the provincial and district
administrations. Close contacts are established with the local communities
at demining sites.
People Against Landmines (Menschen gegen Minen)
Menschen gegen Minen (MgM) is a German NGO that has been working in
humanitarian mine clearance since 2000. After the floods at the Limpopo
River in 2000, MgM handled emergency tasks. Currently it is working on a
mine-suspected area along the railway line in the Limpopo valley in Gaza
province. Manual demining teams, two dog teams and mechanical equipment
are used. The demining teams also assist the local population in clearing
singular mines and UXO when called upon.
In 2000, the U.S. State Department provided $3.14 million for demining
to RONCO, an American company. The company employs about 100 Mozambican
deminers in eight teams with mine detection dogs. One major task is the
clearance of the Sena Railway Line. RONCO also provides support to IND to
train their personnel and improve the database.
Humanitarian agencies and donors, including UNHCR, UNICEF, the European
Union and the World Bank, have contracted commercial companies for
clearance tasks, like MineTech (Zimbabwe), Mechem (South Africa), Empresa
Moçambicana de Desminagem, Lda, (EMD), Afrovita (Mozambique), Lonrho
(Mozambique) and Special Clearance Services (Zimbabwe).
The German Development and Cooperation Agency (GTZ) has hired MineTech
for the demining components of its integrated development projects in
Manica and Sofala provinces. The collaborative effort led to the
development of the Integrated Humanitarian Demining for Development (IHDD)
approach and the Community Mine Awareness for Development (CMAD) concept.30
Armed Forces of Mozambique
In 2000, the United States State Department provided the Mozambican
military (FADM) with demining equipment and vehicles as well as funds for
demining. Until 1999, the Mozambican Department of Defence supported
military training, which also included the training of deminers. The
military runs a demining school in accordance with international
standards. Though military demining units were involved in mine clearance
along a power line from South Africa to Maputo as well as other tasks,
they do not play any major role in humanitarian demining.
The military was in charge of the landmine stockpile destruction in
September 2001, when about 600 anti-personnel mines were destroyed. FADM
has submitted a detailed workplan and budget to IND for the destruction of
the existing 37,500 anti-personnel mines in its possession through 2003.31
The government of Mozambique is committed to fulfil the obligations of
stockpile destruction as per Article Four of the Ottawa Mine Ban
Convention, which Mozambique has signed and ratified.
Mine Risk Reduction Education
HI began Mine Awareness Education Programmes for returning refugees at
the request of UNHCR in 1993. Key persons from other organisations like
the Mozambican Red Cross, health personnel, teachers and local leaders in
mine-affected villages were trained to spread mine awareness messages.
Starting from the local level in Tete province, HI progressively built a
network of 84 organisations (public and private) up to the national level.
HI initiated and coordinated the PEPAM National Mine Awareness/MRRE
Programme from 1995 until 2001, when the coordination was transferred to
IND. An evaluation of materials developed by PEPAM was carried out and
published in 1999.32
After the floods in February and March 2000, HI, in collaboration with
IND, carried out an intensive awareness campaign on the danger of mines
from March to October 2000 in the southern provinces. Similar campaigns
were carried out in March 2001 in the Zambezi valley, which had flooded
HI developed a database of implementing partners and activities in MRRE, which operates from IND’s offices in Maputo and
Nampula. A user’s
guide to this database was also developed and installed in 2001.
HI developed a strategic proposal for integrating MRRE into the
education system.33 The proposal has three major objectives:
(1) capacity building of teachers and instructors of teachers at teacher’s
training colleges, (2) producing and disseminating didactic material, and
(3) technical assistance for the implementation and institutionalisation
of MRRE within the school system. PEPAM and the Ministry of Education
collaborate at different levels: national, provincial (Direcção provincial
de Educação) and local (Direcção Distrital de Educação). The technical as
well as pedagogical advisors of PEPAM support the Ministry of Education
and its departments.
In mine affected areas, 403 so-called zones of pedagogical influence
(ZIP) were formed under the local education authorities, each with a
coordinator, usually a school director or a teacher—2,065 teachers have
PEPAM’s technical advisors are also involved in revising of the school
curriculum and integrating MRRE as a part of civic education into all
relevant subjects. HI’s proposal has been accepted by the National
Institute for the Development of Education. The process of revising the
school curriculum began in 2001, and the new curriculum is to be
introduced in 2003.
GTZ began to collaborate with the Zimbabwean demining company MineTech
in 1994, when, on behalf of UNHCR, it carried out the demining of roads in
preparation for the passage of refugees. Minefields were cleared around
villages, schools, health posts and other vital infrastructure in the two
provinces Manica and Sofala, where GTZ supports rural reconstruction and
development cooperation projects. GTZ and Mine-Tech jointly developed the
IHDD concept that puts people and their communities at the centre. IHDD
relies on the local population to gather information about the mined areas
and UXO. At the same time, IHDD recognises that since demining is
expensive and money available for clearance is limited, many communities
have to live with the explosive legacy of the war for quite some time. It
is thus imperative to develop means to enable the communities to prevent
mine and UXO accidents.
Part of MineTech’s work was gathering information from key informants
and giving mine awareness lectures with the help of wooden mine and UXO
models to the communities gathered at a central place. After some time,
the limitations of this top-down approach became obvious, and a pilot
project to develop new, participative methods was undertaken in Cheringoma
district in Sofala province in 1998.34 The result was the CMAD
concept.35 CMAD is based on participatory, interactive methods
and aims at mobilising and enabling communities to effectively deal with
the mine threat and take adequate actions. Community-based awareness
raising and learning risk-reduction behaviour are the most important
elements. Community volunteers are trained as mine awareness facilitators
and intermediaries between the local population and the clearance
organisation as well as national demining authorities. It is essentially a
process of building long-term trust and confidence between the outside
mine action agents, the development agents and the communities. It is also
a first step towards community development, as the momentum initiated
through mine awareness and community mine action (reporting, keeping up
marking signs, developing coping strategies where mined areas cannot be
used for subsistence production, etc.) could easily be transferred to
other development activities.
Cruz Vermelha de Mozambique (Mozambican Red Cross)
The Mozambican Red Cross is a cooperating partner in the PEPAM
programme. It carries out mine awareness activities in 56 districts. While
HI provides training and material, Red Cross agents and community
volunteers implement the programme. Nowadays, there is not much emphasis
on MRRE, and the new priorities are HIV/AIDS prevention and disaster
preparedness. The Red Cross also provided Mine Victim Assistance in the
provinces of Niassa, Cabo Delgado and Gaza.
The number of amputees is estimated at 10,000 people, which includes all
forms and reasons for amputation, like traffic accidents, work accidents,
diseases, landmine accidents, etc. Special programmes for mine accident
survivors or for the families of mine victims do not exist in Mozambique.
The responsibility for physical rehabilitation rests with MINSAU, which
runs the nine orthoprosthetic centres (one in each provincial capital
except for the Gaza and Manica provinces). In 1995, the programme of
physical rehabilitation of disabled people implemented by the ICRC was
taken over by Prosthetics and Orthotics Worldwide Education and Relief
(POWER) Mozambique, a nationalised NGO started by the UK-based NGO POWER.
In 1999, full responsibility was transferred to the MINSAU.
All the orthoprosthetic centres cater to all disabled, and the
percentage of mine victims is steadily declining. While landmine victims
accounted for 29 percent of new patients in 1997, they accounted for only
nine percent in 2000. POWER still provides technical support to the MINSAU
for running the orthoprosthetic services.
The Mozambican Red Cross, in cooperation with Jaipur Limb Campaign (JLC), established an
orthopaedic centre in Manjacaze district, Gaza
province, in 2000. Most beneficiaries are victims of landmines. A plan for
a mobile centre could not yet be implemented for lack of funds.
The Ministry for Women and the Coordination of Social Action developed
a Policy for Disabled Persons, which was approved by the Council of
Ministers and published in 2000.36 HI, POWER and other donors support the
Ministry at various levels in the implementation of the policy. But a lot
still has to be done to reach the objective of social and economic
integration of disabled persons.
Complaints about the lack of concern regarding victim assistance on the
part of the government and government employees were rampant.
POWER is working closely with local disability organisations,
specifically with the Association of Disabled People of Mozambique (ADEMO), the main association for disabled Mozambicans. ADEMO runs a
community school for disabled children in Maputo and is developing a pilot
project for vocational training (bakery, metal works, carpentry and
probably leather works at a later stage) as well as a pilot project to
provide rural disabled people with donkey carts as an alternative means of
transport in order to enhance their mobility and livelihood.
Mine Action Funding
According to the Landmine Monitor Report 2001, mine action funding
totaled some $17 million in 2000. Of this, $6.6 million was allocated to
the IND, and $10.6 million was provided to mine clearance organisations.37
Major donors are the UNDP with funds from Canada, Sweden, Denmark,
Switzerland, Germany, and Ireland, as well as the individual countries of
Canada, Norway, Germany, Austria, the Netherlands and the United States,
which fund mine action activities directly.
Although most areas in Mozambique affected by landmines and UXO are not
heavily mined, the presence of mines and UXO continues to represent an
impediment to development. Landmine action in the country is primarily
carried out by a number of foreign humanitarian NGOs and a host of
different commercial companies contracted by donors and international
humanitarian agencies. The military plays a very limited role.
Although precise data on mine victims in Mozambique is not available,
their numbers appear to be comparatively low and falling over time. It
seems relatively clear that the needs of mine victims are poorly attended
to and that even demining programmes do not necessarily heed to the
requirements of the local population concerned.
Due to limited resources and a challenging socio-economic environment,
the adoption of participatory monitoring and evaluation approaches would
not be an easy task. The most promising line of approach is the
introduction of pilot participatory monitoring and evaluation projects in
collaboration with the major humanitarian NGOs already active in the
country and in conjunction with IND. Preliminary inquiry suggests that HI,
NPA and ADP would be willing participants in the establishment of such
1. The author met representatives of major players in Mine
Action and relevant institutions in Mozambique between 22 October-3
November 2001. A field trip was made with Handicap International (HI) to
two communities with a mine clearance programme.
2. http://www.ine.gov.mz/indicadores2/imags/população _absoluta2002.gif
(Instituto Nacional de Estatística)
3. World Bank Report No. 20521: Memorandum of the president of the
International Development Association and the International Finance
Corporation to the Executive Directors on a Country Assistance Strategy of
the World Bank Group for the Republic of Mozambique, June 14, 2000: p. 2.
4. UNDP Human Development Report 2001 (Table 1 Human Development Index,
Table 10 Literacy and Enrolment, Table 7 Leading global health crises and
5. Millard, Ananda S. & Kristian Berg Harpviken (1/2001): Community
Studies in Practice: Implementing a New Approach to Landmine Impact
Assessment with Iluustrations from Mozambique. PRIO Report 1/2001. Oslo:
International Peace Research Institute (PRIO): p. 58
6. UNDP/GICHD: A Study of Socio-Economic Approaches to Mine Action,
Geneva: March 2001: p. 149
7. Ibid. p. 150.
8. Ibid. p 151.
9. Eaton et al: Mozambique: The Development of Indigenous Mine Action
Capacities, United Nations Department of Humanitarian Affairs, New York
1997: p. 18-21.
10. UNDP/GICHD: A Study of Socio-Economic Approaches to Mine Action,
Geneva: March 2001: p. 152.
11. Instituto Nacional de Desminagem (IND): The Five-Year National Mine
Action Plan 2002-2006. Maputo: 19 November 2001 (http://www.ind.gov.mz)
12. Ibid. p. 18ff.
13. Ibid. p. 20f.
14. Republic of Mozambique: Landmine Impact Survey. August 2001: 11.
15. Ibid. p. 79ff.
16. Handicap International, “A recolha de dados sobre acidentes com minas
e engenhos explosivos em Moçambique,” PEPAM 1996-2000, Maputo: HI, Julho
17. Ibid. p. 36.
18. Republic of Mozambique: Landmine Impact Survey. August 2001: 31ff.
19. A. S. Millard and K. B. Harpviken, Reassessing the Impact of
Humanitarian Mine Action: Illustration from Mozambique, PRIO Report
(1/2000), Oslo: International Peace and Research Institute, 2000.
20. Ibid. p. 99.
22. Ibid. p. 95.
23. Ibid. p. x.
24. UNDP/GICHD: A Study of Socio-Economic Approaches to Mine Action,
Geneva: March 2001: p. 154.
25. UNMAS (United Nations Mine Action Service): Mine Action and Effective
Coordination. The United Nations Policy. New York 1998 (http://www.un.org/Depts/dpko/mine/POLICY_doc.htm).
26. Norwegian People’s Aid-Mozambique: Standard Operating Procedures and
Guidelines for Impact Assessment Unit. Internal Draft, Tete,
NPA-Mozambique 2001, cited in Ibid. p. 25.
27. Mozambique, Landmine Monitor Report 2001, http://www.icbl.org/lm/2000/report/LMWeb-07.php3, p. 6 of 12
28. Cited from the web page: www.halotrust.org/intro.html
29. See also A. S. Millard and K. B. Harpviken (1/2000): Reassessing the
Impact of Humanitarian Mine Action: Illustration from Mozambique, PRIO
Report (1/2000), Oslo: International Peace and Research Institute, 2000:
30. Mamier, Fritz; Chris Pearce & Ulrich Weyl: The Forgotten Minefields.
Universum Verlagsanstalt, 2000 (GTZ Publication).
31. Instituto Nacional de Desminagem (IND): The Five-Year National Mine
Action Plan 2002-2006. Maputo: 19 November 2001 (http://www.ind.gov.mz):
32. Handicap International: “Os utensílios do PEPAM em Moçambique.
Capitalização” Programa de Educação para a Prevençãde Acidentes causados
por Minas e outros engenhos explosivos. Coordenação Minas. HI Mozambique:
33. Handicap International: O PEPAM no sistema de Educação formal.
Capitalização. Maputo: HI 2001.
34. Scheu, Hildegard: Community Mobilisation and Mine Awareness Approach.
Final Report. Pilot Project in Inhaminga, Cheringoma district, Sofala
province, Mozambique, June 29th to September 5th, 1998. Submitted to GTZ,
Scheu, Hildegard: Training in participatory methods and communication
techniques for Community Mine Awareness for Development (CMAD) advisers.
8th to 16th of October, 1998, Harare, Zimbabwe. Final Report submitted to
GTZ, Eschborn, 1998.
35. Scheu, Hildegard: CMAD: Development of Concept, Method and Approach in
a Pilot Project, Inhaminga, Mozambique. In: Integrated Humanitarian
Demining for Development (IHDD) and Community Mine Awareness for
Development (CMAD). Brussels, 23 and 24 February 1999. Conference Report.
Eschborn: GTZ, 38-55. Internet: http://maic.jmu.edu/hdic/journal/4.3
Scheu, Hildegard: Integrierte humanitäre Entminung für die Entwicklung im
ländlichen Mosambik. In: Landminen und deren Beseitigung, Report Verlag,
June 2000, 52-53.
36. República de Moçambique, Ministério da Mulher e Coordenação da Acção
Social: Política para a Pessoa Portadora de Deficiência, Nov. 2000.
37. Mozambique, Landmine Monitor Report 2001, http://www.icbl.org/lm/2000/report/LMWeb-07.php3, p. 4 of 12.
Dr. Hildegard Scheu
Consulting and Training
Stedter Weg 13
Germany / Alemanha
Tel: +49-(0) 6172-898235
Fax: +49-(0) 6172-7030