Still, over half of Mozambicans live in
poverty. The differences between the city and the
countryside are great. The poorest Mozambicans live in
the country, while almost all investments are
concentrated in the capital Maputo.
Mozambique was ranked 178th out of 187 on the UN
Development Agency's UNDP index of global development in
Countryaah Official Site:
Official statistics for population in Mozambique, including population growth, density, and estimation in next 50 years.
During the first decade of the 2000s, great progress
was made in the health field. The mortality rate for
children under five years decreased sharply, as did
infant mortality. But the life expectancy is even lower
than the average for the rest of Africa at 56 and the
maternal mortality rate is high.
The government was late in tackling the AIDS
epidemic, and it was not until 2000 that a national plan
to combat the disease was adopted. More than a tenth of
the population aged 15 to 49 years were HIV infected at
the beginning of the 2010s and approximately 670,000
children under 17 were orphans due to AIDS.
The traditional family encompasses several
generations living under the same roof. In many areas,
however, families have been divided and children have
become orphans because of the civil war (c. 1980-1994).
Among the people groups north of the Zambezi River,
property is inherited on the mother's side and a person
defines her ancestry based on the mother's origin. In
marriage, the man becomes part of the woman's family.
South of the Zambezi River, the father's origin is
counted and property is inherited on the father's side.
In colonial times, the Portuguese constituted an
upper class, followed by people of mixed African and
Portuguese descent. At the bottom of the social scale
stood the Africans, who made up the vast majority of the
population. Today, most Portuguese have left the country
and with the exception of a small ruling elite, almost
everyone in the country is poor.
The richest elite live in the cities, the poorest
live in the villages. The difference between the more
affluent, developed and influential southern part of the
country and the poorer north is clear. Therefore, there
is tension between people from different countries.
In workplaces, people from the south often hold
together to the north. In the south, the Frelimo
government party is strong, while the opposition within
Renamo is strong in the north. There is a lot of
suspicion between these two political groups. Especially
in the countryside, one has to be careful about partying
for one or the other side.
The role of the woman
Women are subordinate to men in society, both legally
and socially. Domestic violence is common but rarely
leads to prosecution. In politics, however, women are
fairly well represented, mainly as a result of Frelimo's
quotation on the electoral lists. After the 2009
elections, almost 40 percent of women were in
parliament. In 2004, the country got its first female
Prostitution is widespread even though it is illegal.
There is a trafficking in women, mainly with South
Polygamy has been a tradition and was quite common
until the end of the 20th century. In 1981, a law was
passed that stipulated that both spouses in a marriage
share ownership of property and that they decide
together where to live. The law also states that fathers
also have financial responsibility for the children.
But despite measures for gender equality in recent
years, women are a tradition for all household chores.
In the cities, their responsibilities are usually
limited to the home, while the women in the countryside
also have a responsibility for agricultural work,
especially when the men are rested as guest workers.
Women are also more active in the informal sector of the
economy, where incomes are low.
Young children are almost never separated from their
mothers - except when they die, which is common. The
mothers usually carry the children in pieces of cloth on
their backs, and they participate in the work in the
fields. The children are given a lot of tenderness, but
are expected to obey the adults and often start working
at an early age.
It is estimated that half a million children became
orphans or divorced from their parents during the civil
war. Many of them fled to Maputo and other cities, where
they depended on theft and sales. Maputo has thousands
of street children. Many of them are abused by police or
subjected to sexual violence. Child prostitution occurs
and there are reports of trafficking in children for
prostitution in South Africa and Swaziland.
In recent years, hundreds of thousands of children
have lost their parents to AIDS, and more and more
children are being forced to take responsibility for the
household. Orphans and especially motherless children
are vulnerable. They often drop out of school, become
malnourished, end up in child marriage, prostitution,
trafficking or child labor, even though this is
prohibited by law.
The right of LGBTQ people
LGBTQ people have no statutory rights. Instead, the
law is often interpreted as homosexuality is forbidden.
Surveys have shown that the vast majority have gay
friends, and in 2006 the first public meeting on gay
rights was held.
FACTS - SOCIAL CONDITIONS
54 per 1000 births (2018)
Percentage of HIV infected
12.6 percent (2018)
Proportion of HIV infected among young women
7.2 percent (2018)
Proportion of HIV infected among young men
3.0 percent (2018)
Proportion of population with access to clean
47.3 percent (2015)
Proportion of the population having access to
29.4 percent (2017)
Public expenditure on health care as a
percentage of GDP
5.4 percent (2015)
Public expenditure on health care per person
$ 19 (2016)
Proportion of women in parliament
40 percent (2018)
The government takes refugees home
The government is launching a program to return Mozambicans who have been
guest workers in South Africa to their home country. The refugees leave South
Africa after being subjected to xenophobic violence there.
3 dead in rattlesnakes
New tariff increases for public transport lead to rattles in Maputo. Three
people are killed and over 100 injured. Most price increases are then withdrawn.