THE ruling Mozambique Liberation Front (Frelimo) party’s presidential candidate Daniel Francisco Chapo is expected to jet into Harare to meet President Emmerson Mnangagwa for a tête-a-tête on July 20 ahead of his country’s October elections.

According to Zanu PF national spokesperson Christopher Mutsvangwa, Chapo’s visit is a courtesy call “as he seeks wisdom from elders”.

Chapo (47) was nominated to succeed sitting President Filipe Nyusi as the Frelimo leader last month.

“He is visiting all former liberation movements in southern Africa. He will be meeting President Mnangagwa. There is now so much in Zimbabwe that it is attracting attention,” Mutsvangwa said.

“With Manhize (steelmaking company) now in full swing, the port of Beira will be busy. Since 1965 under the (Ian) Smith regime, the UDI [Unilateral Declaration of Independence], Beira has never had an economic lifeline such as the hinterland of Zimbabwe (Rhodesia) because it collapsed due to sanctions.

“Our export route has been Durban, some kilometres away. Now with the developments by the President — steel, lithium and the general economic revival of Zimbabwe, there is a new vitality in the Zimbabwean economy and the shortest route is through Beira and we want to restore its glory.”

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Mutsvangwa said Chapo’s visit was meant to strengthen ties between Zimbabwe and Mozambique.

“We are sister parties with Frelimo, so he is coming to learn. He needs to tap into the wisdom and historical experience of the liberation movements and the struggle against apartheid and racism,” he said.

“We are going to share notes on how best Africa can put its foot forward to change the geo-political environment.”

Since Mozambique’s independence in 1975, all heads of State have come from Frelimo.

If elected, Chapo will become Mozambique’s fourth democratically-elected head of State.