Mozambique made news headlines earlier this year for dreadful reasons. The country is well known and loved for it’s long periods of sunshine, warm Indian Ocean beaches, numerous islands and vibrant people – making it a favorite for South African travelers. However, in March and April 2019 the images seen of the country were sheer ruins from Tropical Cyclone Idai and Tropical Cyclone Kenneth. Cyclone Idai caused havoc to the city of Beira in central Mozambique, extending damage with wild winds and heavy rainfalls to Sofala, Zambezia, Tete and Manica provinces. Cyclone Kenneth descended a month later through the Cabo Delgado province, affecting Macomia and Ibo districts including the islands. The natural disaster affected millions of people – taking precious lives and leaving more people displaced and injured. The spread of infectious diseases such as Cholera worsened, and damage to livestock and crop mean food security issues persist even after the storm has ended.
Fortunately, not all is lost. The southern region of the country was spared the catastrophe, giving Mozambique a chance to reconstruct itself and remain a safe and nourishing home to those within its borders, and a welcoming destination to those visiting by land, by air and by sea.
Mahlodi Mmopane is a South African based Educator born in Limpopo Province, currently living in Gauteng. She posses an undeniable creative flare with a special gifting for the lens. Mahlodi visited Mozambique in March 2019 – about two weeks after the first cyclone hit the country.
We are privileged here to see Southern Mozambique through her eyes. Through a series of ten photographs we are given an opportunity to construct our own narrative of Mozambique. As we look at each photograph may we gather clues of the history of Mozambique, the culture, the economy, the infrastructure, the climate etc. For those of us who have visited the country, may the pictures stir some memories and comparisons of our time there. For those who Mozambique is home, may be pictures inspire a sense of appreciation and hope, among all the feelings they may evoke.