Written by Josué Bila

Translated by Francisco Chuquela

There is a growing belief that, with great urgency, the legal perspective (particularly the criminal Law, found in constitutional democratic regimes) will solve the problems of Mozambique. It seems to be a mistake of those who forget that people in their social relations still retain the “ngungunhanic provincial regime” (exchange or sell people [servants/slaves] for a horse or umbrella for one of his wives) and they less build democratic constitutional apparatuses , In which individuals allegedly associate themselves not on the basis of privileges, unpredictions and distinctions, but on the basis of egalitarian individualism and on the predictability. 

It seems that rancorous citizenship doesn’t perceive that one of its duties is to associate itself with the citizenship committed to reflection in order to try to understand the historical place in which the relations of power are built and structured and as the same (relations of power) are intertwined with the many social networks in which people dynamize, manufacture and solve their lives. How people (government officials or salespeople/improved latrine users) solve their lives and why do they solve the way they solve and not otherwise? What causes a person to take a particular strategy that binds him to many other people who cooperate in the materialization of that strategy? The rancorous citizenship, perhaps without delay, will enter into social thrombosis, since it uses punitive-imprisoning strategies to the ngungunhanic provincial regime and less makes questions to understanding the social and political processes, mated with History. What are the ways to access this dreamed constitutional democratic regime? I doubt that it will be by strategies of rancorous citizenship, like the “catch the government thief” (khoma muyivi or khoma xiguevenga).

Tsonga vocabulary

Ngungunhanic – from Ngungunhani, historical emperor of Gaza (Gaza province was an empire before colonialism)

khoma  catch

Muyivi – thief

Xiguevenga – bandit, criminal

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