Modelart is fortunate to be one of the few beneficiaries of the Total LNG Refinery project. We produced numerous presentation models to assist with communicating an overview of the project, and are most grateful to our client for placing their business with our company. The recent siege of the nearby town of Palma and the tragedy that has unfolded, feels too close to home to forgo making comment from my own perspective as a business person and concerned African, whose hope it is that our continent will be able to release its self from its self imposed distresses in my lifetime.
Mozambique is a typical example of African Democracy. Liberation Regimes actively concentrate hugely disproportionate resources on control mechanisms to remain in power, for reasons of greed, and an obsession with re-inventing failed ideologies with the promise of prosperity for all. Phrases like “nationalization of banks and businesses,” rank highly in the vocabulary of the leadership as a tool in the box of wealth dispersal promises. There is little to no focus on fostering a new,
Vibrant, business environment for fear of diverting dependence away from the so-called liberation movement, and risk of diluting the ruling party’s political power base. Resources are stretched and beneficiaries are restricted to the connected few, who grow more desperate as these dwindling resources dissolve into an increasing population of dependents, needing to be rewarded for their loyalty to the cause. Fringe communities are ignored and become marginalized with little to lose. Radical militant movements rise up, finding support for waging new liberation wars against their erstwhile liberators, for a share in the spoils that they were promised at the time of independence, but materially denied.
This largely unreported civil war in Mozambique has intensified over decades with in excess of half a million displaced with many thousands of casualties and deaths. Voices of these marginalized continue to be ignored, escalating in the recent attacks on civilians and the expat community in Palma, just ten kilometres from the new LNG construction site. Mozambique is poor! Not because of a lack of resources but a dearth of leadership with the vision and skills to free a growing population from abject poverty. Mozambique is relatively small in population numbers relative to its geography and here should be ample to go around.
The recent deplorable acts of terrorism centered in Palma are a sign of what is to come if the leadership on both sides remains unable to negotiate middle ground resulting in a truce. Without which; capital investment, much needed skills and resources reserved, for projects such as the Total LNG plant are at risk of being diverted into more stable geographies. Future capital will be more expensive, as will the skills and resources and the viability of the project compromised.
Failure of the Total LNG project to realize its full potential will be a severe setback to the local communities, the country of Mozambique and the African subcontinent in a part of the world that is desperate for all the foreign investment and critical skills it will attract.