UNITED NATIONS POPULATION INFORMATION NETWORK (POPIN)
UN Population Division, Department of Economic and Social Affairs,
with support from the UN Population Fund (UNFPA)

94-09-08: Statement of Mozambique, H.E. Dr. Pascoal Manuel Mocumbi

ISO: MOZ

 

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The electronic preparation of this document has been done by the Population Information Network(POPIN) of the United Nations Population Division in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme

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 AS WRITTEN





REPUBLIC OF MOZAMBIQUE





                    STATEMENT OF THE GOVERNMENT OF

                               MOZAMBIQUE

                 BY: H. E. DR. PASCOAL MARUEL MOCUMBI

                      MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS







                                   THE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE

                                    ON POPULATION AND

                                    DEVELOPMENT



                                    CAIRO

                                    SEPTEMBER 5-13,1994.





MR. CHAIRMAN

HONORABLE SECRETARY GENERAL OF THE CONFERENCE

YOUR EXCELLENCIES

DISTINGUISHED PARTICIPANTS

LADIES AND GENTLEMEN



LET ME FIRST OF ALL EXTEND TO HIS EXCELLENCE PRESIDENT MUBARAK OUR

CONGRATULATIONS FOR HIS ELECTION TO CHAIR THE ICPD. OUR

APPRECIATION IS EXTENSIVE TO THE GOVERNMENT AND PEOPLE OF EGYPT

WHOSE TRADITIONAL HOSPITALITY WE ARE ENJOYING SINCE OUR ARRIVAL IN

THIS HISTORIC CITY OF CAIRO.



TO THE ORGANIZERS AND IN PARTICULAR TO DR. NAFIS SADIK WE PAY A SPECIAL

TRIBUTE FOR THEIR TIRELESS EFFORT IN PREPARING THIS MEETING.



MR CHAIRMAN LADIES AND GENTLEMEN



THE GOVERNMENT OF MOZAMBIQUE HAS PARTICIPATED ACTIVELY IN THE

PROCESS OF PREPARATIONS THAT PRECEDED THIS CONFERENCE, SPECIALLY

THE DEBATE ON THE PROGRAMME OF ACTION. IN THIS SPIRIT WE ATTENDED

THE DAKAR CONFERENCE LAST DECEMBER AT THE REGIONAL LEVEL.

THE DAKAR CONFERENCE WAS VERY USEFUL FOR IT PROVIDED US WITH AN

EXCELLENT OPPORTUNITY TO MAKE AN ASSESSMENT OF THE INITIATIVES

UNDERTAKEN BY OUR COUNTRIES INDIVIDUALLY IN THE IMPLEMENTATION OF

THE KILIMANJARO PROGRAMME OF ACTION ADOPTED EARLIER IN 1984.



 THE MEETING STRESSED THE URGENT NEED FOR THE FORMULATION OF

POPULATION POLICIES WHICH TAKE INTO ACCOUNT THE REALITIES AND

TRADITIONS OF THEIR RESPECTIVE COUNTRIES AND, MORE THAN THIS, THE

NEED TO INCORPORATE SUCH POLICIES AND PROGRAMS IN DEVELOPMENT

STRATEGIES WITH PARTICULAR EMPHASIS ON SOCIAL SECTORS IN VIEW OF

THEIR POTENTIAL INFLUENCE ON HUMAN DEVELOPMENT AND ON ATTITUDES AND

BEHAVIOR OF THE PEOPLE.



 IN THE SAME WAY, WE TOOK PART IN THE PREPARATORY COMMITTEE MEETING HELD

THIS YEAR IN NEW YORK, WHICH WAS ESSENTIAL FOR IT ALLOWED THE IDENTIFICATION

OF BASIS FOR CONSENSUS.



AT THE SUBREGIONAL LEVEL, WE HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO EXCHANGE VIEWS

LAST MONTH IN MAPUTO ON THE OUTSTANDING ITEMS TO BE NEGOTIATED IN

THE CONFERENCE. THESE EXERCISE ENDED WITH THE HARMONIZATION OF OUR

RESPECTIVE POSITIONS ON SEXUAL AND REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH, METHODS OF

FAMILY PLANNING, SEXUAL ABUSE AND FEMALE MUTILATION, SPACING OF

CHILD BIRTH, ABORTION AND SEXUAL EDUCATION.



AT THE NATIONAL LEVEL, STUDIES HAVE BEEN CONDUCTED ON MATTERS SUCH AS, THE

RELATIONSHIP AND INTERDEPENDENCY BETWEEN ECONOMIC, SOCIAL, CULTURAL AND

POLITICAL PHENOMENA.



THE DEBATE ON POPULATION ISSUES AND THEIR RELATIONSHIP WITH THE PROCESS OF

DEVELOPMENT IS BUILDING MOMENTUM IN MY COUNTRY,

INCLUDING THE AWARENESS OF ITS IMPORTANCE VIS--VIS THE DEMOGRAPHIC

VARIABLES IN THE COUNTRY'S SOCIO-ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT PLANNING.

WITH REGARD TO COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS OF THE POPULATION

STATISTICAL DATA, EFFORTS ARE BEING MADE IN IMPROVING THEIR QUALITY

AND TERRITORIAL COVERAGE, AND IN BETTER UNDERSTANDING OF THE INTER-

RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN DEMOGRAPHIC PHENOMENA, ECONOMIC, SOCIAL AND

CULTURAL PROCESSES.



 THE IMPORTANCE OF USING THE DEMOGRAPHIC VARIABLES WHEN CONSIDERING

SOCIO-ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT PLANNING IS BECOMING A COMMON FEATURE OF OUR

DEVELOPMENT POLICY.



THE POPULATION OF MOZAMBIQUE ESTIMATED AT 16 MILLION, NOW GROWS AT

A RATE OF 2.78. THIS RATE IS WELL ABOVE THAT OF THE GROSS DOMESTIC

PRODUCT (GDP) AND IS MAINLY CONCENTRATED WITHIN THE POOR POPULATION

LAYERS, WHERE THE IMPACT OF ECONOMIC REHABILITATION PROGRAMMES HAS

NOT BEEN EFFECTIVE.



MOZAMBIQUE GOVERNMENT IS VERY CONCERNED WITH PROBLEMS GENERATED BY

POPULATION GROWTH, ITS PRESSURE OVER RESOURCES, SPECIALLY, THE

IMPLICATIONS IN THE LABOUR MARKET. WE ARE ALSO AWARE THAT IN

MOZAMBIQUE THIS GROWTH IS LIKELY TO INCREASE RAPIDLY IN THE POST-

WAR PERIOD, AS RESULT OF NORMALIZATION OF LIFE AND CONSEQUENT

DECREASE IN INFANT AND CHILD MORTALITY.



THE POPULATION INCREASE AND ITS YOUTHFULNESS CONSTITUTE A GREAT

CHALLENGE FOR THE GOVERNMENT TO CREATE JOBS, ON ONE HAND, AND TO

MEET THE EVER INCREASING RESOURCE DEMANDS, ON THE OTHER.



IN ORDER TO COPE WITH THIS PROBLEMS, GOVERNMENT IS CURRENTLY ENGAGED

IN INCORPORATING DEMOGRAPHIC VARIABLES INTO NATIONAL DEVELOPMENT POLICIES.



IT IS OUR BELIEVE THAT THE ADOPTION OF SUCH APPROACH WILL HELP THE

GOVERNMENT TO PAY APPROPRIATE ATTENTION TO RESPOND ACCORDINGLY THE

NEEDS OF DIFFERENT SEGMENTS OF OUR SOCIETY. THE POPULATION POLICY

TO BE EFFECTIVE WILL HAVE TO TARE INTO ACCOUNT NATIONAL REALITIES

AND TRADITIONS, AS STIPULATED IN DAKAR REGIONAL MEETING.



CURRENTLY, MY GOVERNMENT IS CONCENTRATING ITS ATTENTION IN THE FOLLOWING

AREAS OF PRIORITY:



- MOTHER-CHILD HEALTH CARE AND FAMILY PLANNING;



- THE  INTRODUCTION OF SUBJECTS DEALING WITH POPULATION AND FAMILY

PLANNING IN THE CURRICULA OF THE NATIONAL EDUCATION SYSTEM;



- THE INTRODUCTION OF DEMOGRAPHY IN TRAINING COURSES FOR GEOGRAPHERS,

MEDICAL PRACTITIONERS AND ECONOMISTS; AND,



- THE IMPROVEMENT OF WOMEN'S STATUS.





MR. CHAIRMAN

LADIES AND GENTLEMEN



IN MY COUNTRY THE WAR OF DESTABILIZATION IMPOSED ON US BY THE

APARTHEID REGIME, PRECLUDED MY GOVERNMENT FROM IMPLEMENTING SOCIAL

AND ECONOMIC PROGRAMS THAT COULD HAVE CONTRIBUTED FOR THE

IMPROVEMENT OF THE GENERAL STANDARD OF LIVING. THE WAR LEFT THE

COUNTRY WITH ALL ECONOMIC INFRASTRUCTURES VIRTUALLY DESTROYED, AND

ITS SOCIAL FABRIC COMPLETELY DISRUPTED, THUS WEAKENING ITS CAPACITY

TO RESPOND ADEQUATELY TO BASIC PROBLEMS RELATED TO POPULATION.



FORTUNATELY, THE CEASE FIRE IS HOLDING SINCE THE GENERAL PEACE

AGREEMENT WAS SIGNED TWO YEARS AGO IN OCTOBER 4, 1992. THE

AGREEMENT IS A CULMINATION OF OUR STRONG RESOLVE TO FIND

APPROPRIATE MEANS TO HALT THE WIDESPREAD SUFFERING OF OUR PEOPLE



 THE PEACE AGREEMENT BROUGHT ABOUT NECESSARY CONDITIONS TO INITIATE THE

IMPLEMENTATION OF NATIONAL RECONSTRUCTION PROGRAMS.

IN THIS CONTEXT, WE WERE ABLE TO LAUNCH A MAJOR REPATRIATION

PROGRAMME FOR MORE THAN 1.5 MILLION MOZAMBICAN REFUGEES WHO HAVE

SOUGHT SANCTUARY IN THE NEIGHBORING COUNTRIES. SO FAR, MORE THAN

A HALF OF THE REFUGEES HAVE BEEN RESETTLED IN THE AREAS OF THEIR

CHOICE OR ORIGIN.



 MOZAMBIQUE GOVERNMENT, WITH ASSISTANCE OF THE UNITED NATIONS, IS

PRESENTLY CARRYING ON REINTEGRATION AND RESETTLEMENT PROGRAMMES FOR

THE DEMOBILIZED SOLDIERS. THIS TASK HAS BECOME ONE OF THE MAJOR

CHALLENGES FOR THE GOVERNMENT DUE TO THE STILL WEAK ECONOMIC

SITUATION OF THE COUNTRY.



 ON THE OTHER HAND, THE GOVERNMENT IS MAKING EFFORTS ON THE

REVITALIZATION OF THE ECONOMY AND THE IMPROVEMENT OF THE POPULATION

STANDARD OF LIVING THROUGH A SET OF DEVELOPMENT POLICY INSTRUMENTS,

INCLUDING THE PROGRAMME OF ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL REHABILITATION, THE

TRIENNIAL PUBLIC INVESTMENT PROGRAMME AND THE NATIONAL

RECONSTRUCTION PLAN.



FORWARD FOR A LASTING PEACE AND STABILITY, WHERE NATIONAL

UNITY WILL BE PRESERVED AND NATIONAL RECONSTRUCTION WILL BE CARRIED

OUT SUCCESSFULLY FOR THE PROGRESS AND PROSPERITY OF OUR COUNTRY IN

THIS RESPECT, MY GOVERNMENT IS COMMITTED TO THE IMPLEMENTATION OF

GENERAL PEACE AGREEMENT AND THE HOLDING OF ELECTIONS NEXT OCTOBER

27 AND 28.





MR. CHAIRMAN

LADIES AND GENTLEMEN



WE ARE AWARE OF THE FACT THAT GLOBAL POPULATION POLICY FRAMEWORK

SHOULD NOT BE LIMITED TO MECHANISMS OF BIRTH CONTROL, BUT IT MUST

ALSO EMBRACE ISSUES RELATED TO DEVELOPMENTAL EFFORTS AND TO THEIR

IMPACT ON THE STANDARD OF LIVING OF THE POPULATION AND TO

ENVIRONMENT IN TERMS OF SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT. POPULATION ISSUES

CANNOT BE ADDRESSED IN ISOLATION, THEY MUST FIT IN THE OVERALL

EFFORTS TO RID COUNTRIES OF POVERTY AND TO PROMOTE SOCIAL AND

ECONOMIC PROGRESS.



 THIS APPROACH ALSO SHOULD ADDRESS THE FACT THAT IN MANY CASES,

ECONOMIC GROWTH BENEFITS MUCH MORE THE URBAN AND RURAL FORMAL

SECTOR, IN DETRIMENT OF THE DISADVANTAGED SECTORS WHICH REMAIN

MARGINALIZED.



IT SHOULD ALSO RECOGNIZE TEE NEED OF SUPPLEMENTARY EFFORTS TO RAISE

FINANCIAL RESOURCES IN ORDER TO SECURE THE ESTABLISHMENT OF SOCIAL

PROGRANMES FOR THE BENEFIT OF THE VULNERABLE SOCIAL LAYERS.

I BEG YOUR INDULGENCE FOR WHAT I AM GOING TO SAY: WOMEN AT THE

"SOUTH" OF HUMANKIND, BECAUSE THEY ARE UNDER-PRIVILEGED.

PARADOXICALLY, WOMEN ARE THE BEST POSITIONED GROUP TO TRANSIT NEW

VALUES AND ATTITUDES TO ALL OF US. THEY ARE THE SUPPORTERS OF THE

FAMILY, THE FIRST EDUCATORS AND TEACHERS OF ALL OF US. IF WE CAN

SUCCEED IN CHANGING OUR ATTITUDES REGARDING THE ROLE OF WOMEN ON

POPULATION ISSUES SUCH AS FAMILY PLANNING AND EDUCATION AND MANY

OTHERS WE CAN REST ASSURED THAT THE SANE ATTITUDES WILL BE PASSED

ON TO THE YOUNGER GENERATIONS. STATISTICAL DATA INDICATED THAT

EDUCATED WOMEN TEND TO HAVE FEWER CHILDREN, THAN THOSE THAT ARE

NOT EDUCATED. STUDIES CONDUCTED IN MY COUNTRY SHOW THAT FERTILITY

AMONG ILL-TREATED IS TWICE HIGHER THAN AMONG EDUCATED WOMEN.



MR. CHAIRMAN

LADIES AND GENTLEMEN



I WOULD LIKE NOW TO TURN MY ATTENTION TO CHALLENGES BEFORE US FROM

AN AFRICAN PERSPECTIVE. AFRICA AS YOU ALL KNOW IS STILL STRUGGLING

WITH ITS ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT. SO, MANY ADVERSE FACTORS,

BOTH INTERNAL AND EXTERNAL, ARE SLOWING DOWN ITS PACE. CULTURALLY,

HOWEVER, WE CAN CLAIM OUR RIGHTFUL PLACE IN THE CONCERT OF NATIONS.

I AM NOT SPEAKING OF PAINTINGS, SCULPTURE, MUSIC AND DANCE AND MANY

OTHERS THAT PROJECT OUR CONTINENT BEYOND OUR BORDERS. I AM SPEAKING

OF VALUES. THE WAY WE PERCEIVE OURSELVES AND THOSE AROUND US, THE WAY WE

CONCEPTUALIZE AND CATEGORIZE REALITY, THE MEANING WE ATTACH OUR FAMILIES,

TO PROPERTY, TO MATERIAL PRODUCTION, ETC.



THIS IS PART OF OUR REALITY. ANY POPULATION PROGRAMME DIRECTED TO

OUR COUNTRIES CAN ONLY SURVIVE IN SO FAR AS IT CAN BE MADE RELEVANT

AND MEANINGFUL TO THE PEOPLE. THIS IS PARTICULARLY SO IN THE RURAL

AREAS. I SUBMIT TO YOU THAT IN AN AFRICAN FAMILY WE DON'T COUNT THE

NUMBER OF OUR FAMILY AGGREGATE. IF THERE IS FOOD SHORTAGE, IF THE<RR

IS NOT ENOUGH FOR ALL WE DON'T LOOK TO THE SIZE OF OUR FAMILY AS

THE CAUSE, A POSSIBLE WAY OF REASONING MIGHT BE: WE DIDN'T TILL

ENOUGH LAND, MAY BE THE RAIN CAME A LITTLE LATER OR DIDN'T COME AT

ALL, MAY BE THERE WAS A PLAGUE THAT DESTROYED THE CROPS, THE SALARY

IS LOW AND SO FROTHY.



AN EFFECTIVE GLOBAL POPULATION POLICY SHOULD ALSO AIM AT PROMOTING

APPROPRIATE SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT WITH A VIEW TO ELIMINATE MECHANISMS OF

TRANSMISSION OF POVERTY FROM GENERATION TO GENERATION.



IT BECOMES NECESSARY THAT STATES STRENGTHEN THEIR COORDINATION TO FACE

THE PROBLEM OF POPULATION GROWTH HAS A GLOBAL PHENOMENA.

THE RAMIFICATIONS OF THE PROBLEM OF POPULATION GROWTH ARE COMPLEX

AND THEIR IMPACT ARE GLOBAL. DESPITE THE FACT THAT MAJOR RATES OF

POPULATION GROWTH CAN BE FOUND IN THE DEVELOPING COUNTRIES,

SUITABLE SOLUTIONS FOR THE PROBLEM REQUIRE THE COOPERATION OF ALL   STATES.



I BELIEVE, MR. PRESIDENT, THAT WE ARE TASKED WITH THE OBJECTIVE OF

REACHING AGREEMENT ON THE PROGRAMME OF ACTION. HOWEVER, ITS

IMPLEMENTATION WILL REQUIRE EFFECTIVE INTERACTION AND COOPERATION

WITH INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY DONORS, MULTILATERAL AND REGIONAL

ORGANIZATIONS, AS WELL AS NGO'S.



IN EACH COUNTRY DECISION MAKERS HAVE TO TARE INTO CONSIDERATION

REALITIES SUCH AS THE CULTURE AND TRADITIONAL BELIEVES AS WELL AS   THE

LEVEL OF ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT.



SUMMING UP, MR. PRESIDENT, MOZAMBIQUE CONSIDERS THAT THE DRAFT

"PLAN OF ACTION" THAT WE ARE CONSIDERING IS A GOOD BASIS FOR A

CONSENSUS WHICH WILL SERVE AS GLOBAL REFERENCE FOR THE COUNTRIES IN

THEIR EFFORTS TO ESTABLISH NATIONAL POLICIES IN ADDRESSING

POPULATION DEVELOPMENT ISSUES.



I SINCERELY HOPE THAT IN THIS CAIRO ICPD DIALOGUE AND TOLERANCE   WILL

PREVAIL AS WE ARE ALL COMMITTED TO BUILD A GLOBAL SOCIETY.



IT IS WITH THAT SPIRIT THAT YOU CAN BE ASSURED OF OUR FULL

COOPERATION FOR THE SUCCESSFUL OUTCOME OF THIS CONFERENCE.





THANK YOU.






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