Gorongosa Park (PNG) Evacuated.
Renamo Threatens road and rail traffic.
Thursday June 20, 2013, 0900.
I am just off the phone to Gorongosa and the very bad news is that all tourists have been evacuated from the Parque Nacional da Gorongosa (National Park) and that he saw about 30 military transport trucks
heading north towards the Gorongosa Mountain. So looks like a big show-down to root out the rebels may be being planned by the Mozambique Army. Or just a "show of force"?
Advisory from the Park: We are issuing this note to potential guests: Note: there is some civil unrest in the center of Mozambique and we recommend that you should check the news and be in touch with us before traveling to Gorongosa.
The Girassol Gorongosa Lodge & Safari is also sending this info to the persons trying to book for the coming days:
Note: Due to access restrictions to the Gorongosa National Park at the moment we are not able to accept bookings till the end of June.
As soon as the situation is normalized we hope that you can visit us.
The best contact is the reception of the Girassol Gorongosa Lodge & Safari: (+258) 82 308 2252
This after Renamo on Tuesday looted a weapons depot at Savane (about 100km from Beira on the Dondo - Caia road), killing 6 soldiers, the Moz govt is now moving to attack the Renamo base at Satunjira also called Casa Banana.
Renamo has vowed to sabotage the Beira - Sena railway and to attack any road traffic between Save and Muxungue (120km north of Save) on the main road EN.1
While the disarming and disbanding of Renamo bandits is long overdue, this is a damned shame as this could spiral out of control and will cause a major blow to tourism and investment.
Advice? Always difficult but right now but the Mozambican Army are now operating armed convoys between Save and Muxunge, in both directions. There may be delays as the convoys only operate at uncertain intervals during the day. I assume no night travel will be permitted on this stretch of road. No word on any threat to Inhassoro, Vilanculos, Inhambane and place south area, but looks like a big showdown between govt and Renamo so who knows how this could progress.
Will keep posting as info comes in.
LATEST: 20 June at 16h20:
Some good news from Gorogosa is I have just spoken to Sakkie van Zyl who has Gorongosa Adventures gorongosa-adventures.blogspot.com just outside Gorogosa Park gate and he is reporting business as usual with guests coming and going as usual. He lives amongst the local population and so far no reports on the ground of problems. So we hold thumbs that the Renamo bite is weaker than its bark
Mikehttp://www.news24.com/Africa/News/Renam ... e-20130619
21 June at 13h50:
This morning a bus and a truck were attacked on the main road EN.1 at the Muari / Ripembe river about 20km north of the Save river in Machanga district. The bus continued on with no injuries but the truck was forced to stop and a women passenger with a bullet wound was taken to hospital in Muxungue. There is a steel "Bailey" type bridge over the Ripembe river where traffic is forced to walking pace as there are very steep on and off ramps to the bridge.
Otherwise traffic all along the main road between Muxungue and Caia is reported to be moving normally and police have increased patrols. Night driving is certainly not advisable at present but this applies to the best of times in Mozambique as there are frequent unlit vehicles, domestic and wild animals on the road, drunk drivers and unpredictable pedestrain behaviour. http://news.yahoo.com/mozambique-police ... 10647.html
22 June at 15h30
I am informed via a lodge in Inhassoro that there are now armed convoys in both directins between Vila Franca do Save (Save river bridge) and Muxungue, 108km north of Save. Expect some delays as the convoys run when there are sufficient vehicles to warrant a trip, and according to the availability of military personell and vehicles.