Posted: Friday 5th September 2014 at 9:31 am

Mozambique rivals to sign ceasefire

5c2577393920 77393057 Mozambique rivals to sign ceasefireAfonso Dhlakama has lost every election since 1994

Mozambique President Arnando Guebuza is to sign a ceasefire with ex-rebel leader Afonso Dhlakama, who has returned to the capital for the first time in two years.

Mr Dhlakama flew into Maputo on Thursday after a deal to end two years of conflict was agreed last month.

The Renamo leader, who also fought a 1975-1992 civil war, was accompanied by diplomats for his own protection.

He said he would contest next month’s elections.

 77151328 mo te mural 003 Mozambique rivals to sign ceasefireFrelimo and Renamo fought a bitter 15-year civil war

 77151327 mozambique 1007 0215 Mozambique rivals to sign ceasefireDespite recent progress, many Mozambicans remains stuck in poverty

Mr Dhlakama has contested every poll since the civil war ended but has always lost.

In October 2012, he went into hiding after accusing the government of breaking the terms of the 1992 peace deal.

The low-level insurgency threatened the economic progress Mozambique had made in recent years.

Thousands of Renamo supporters greeted Mr Dhlakama at the airport, reports the AFP news agency.

“On October 15, I want this same crowd,” he told them.

“I want you all to vote Afonso Dhlakama, number one and number two Renamo!” he said in reference to the presidential and parliamentary elections.

Mr Guebuza is stepping down after serving two terms and former Defence Minister Felipe Nyusi will be the candidate of the governing Frelimo party.