Mozambique became independent from Portugal on 25 June 1975 after ten years of a war of independence lead by the marxist Front for the Liberation of Mozambique (Frelimo). Civil war followed between Frelimo and the Mozambique National Resistance (Renamo) from 1977. After Frelimo abandoned marxism in 1989, a peace agreement was reached in 1992. President Joaquim Chissano of Frelimo stepped down in 2004 after 18 years in office. President Armando Emilio Guebuza ruled the country in both terms until 2014. The last presidential elections saw the new FRELIMO candidate Giacinto Filipe Nyussi gain power with 57% of the votes, as confirmed by the Constitutional Court. The new government was sworn in on January 15, 2015.

Mozambique has mixed legal system of Portuguese civil law, Islamic law, and customary law.

Mozambique has a constitution dating from 2004.

The laws of Mozambique are available in Portuguese here.

ACJR has co-operated with the Mozambican Prison Service (SERNAP), the legal aid service (IPAJ), the Centre for Human Rights (CDH) at the University Eduardo Mondlane in Maputo, and REFORMAR, in carrying out research and reform.


Le Mozambique a acquit son indépendance du Portugal le 25 Juin 1975, après dix ans de guerre pour l'indépendance, menée par le Front Marxiste pour la Libération du Mozambique (Frelimo). Une guerre civile entre le Frelimo et la Résistance Nationale du Mozambique (Renamo) suivi l’indépendance à partir de 1977. Après que le Frelimo ait abandonné le marxisme en 1989, un accord de paix fut conclu en 1992. Le président Joaquim Chissano du Frelimo démissionna en 2004 après 18 ans au pouvoir. Président Armando Emilio Guebuza a gouverné le pays en deux mandats jusqu'en 2014. La dernière élection présidentielle a vu le nouveau candidat du Frelimo, Giacinto Philip Nyussi puissance de gain avec 57% des suffrages exprimés, comme l'a confirmé 

Le Mozambique possède un système judiciaire mixte de droit civil portugais, de droit islamique et de droit coutumier. La Constitution date de 2004.

Les lois du Mozambique sont disponibles en portugais ici.

L'ACJR a collaboré avec plusieurs institutions étatiques et organisations de la société civile, y compris le Service pénitentiaire mozambicain (SERNAP), le service d'aide juridique (IPAJ), le Centre pour les droits de l'homme (CDH) à l'Université Eduardo Mondlane à Maputo et avec l'organisation REFORMAR afin d'entreprendre des travaux de recherche ayant comme objectif la réforme des politiques publiques et des pratiques. 



Moçambique tornou-se independente de Portugal em 25 de Junho 1975, após dez anos de uma guerra de independência liderada pela Frente marxista para a Libertação de Moçambique (FRELIMO). A guerra entre a FRELIMO e a Resistência Nacional de Moçambique (RENAMO) seguiu a partir de 1977. Após FRELIMO abandonar o marxismo em 1989, chegou-se a um acordo de paz em 1992. O Presidente Joaquim Chissano da Frelimo deixou o poder em 2004, após 18 anos no cargo. O presidente Armando Emilio Guebuza governou o pais nos dois mandatos até 2014. As ultimas eleições presidenciais viram o novo candidato da FRELIMO, Giacinto Filipe Nyussi ganhar o poder com 57% dos votos, como confirmado pelo Tribunal Costitucional. O o novo governo foi empossado aos 15 de Janeiro de 2015.

Moçambique tem um sistema jurídico misto de Direito Português civil, Direito Islâmico, e direito consuetudinário.

O Moçambique tem uma Constituição que data de 2004.

As leis de Moçambique estão disponíveis em Português aqui.

A ACJR colabou com o Serviço Nacional Penitenciário (SERNAP), o Instituto Patrocínio Assistência Juridíca (IPAJ), o Centro de Direitos Humanos (CDH) da Universidade Eduardo Mondlane e a organização REFORMAR, para conduzir pesquisas aplicadas à reformas em justiça criminal e direitos humanos. 

‘Closed for the holidays’- Justice in Mozambican
Author: Jean
Published: May 10, 2018

In Mozambique the courts close for 60 days from December until February for the ‘judicial vacation’ (férias judiciais). For emergency matters, shifts are arranged by the Supreme Court only at the court of first instance as regulated by articles 27 and 28 of Law 24/2007. At the moment there is a proposal before the First Commission of Parliament to revise this system and reduce the duration of the holidays to 30 days.

Fechada por férias – A Justiça Moçambicana
Author: Jean
Published: May 10, 2018

Em Moçambique, os tribunais fecham por 60 dias, entre Dezembro e Fevereiro para as férias judiciais. Por casos de emergência, turnos são organizados pelo Tribunal Supremo apenas nos tribunais de primeira instância, como regulados pelos Artigos 27 e 28 da Lei n. 24/2007. Actualmente uma proposta está na I Comissão da Assembleia da República para reduzir a duração das férias judiciais para 30 dias.

Developments in Addressing Torture in Mozambique
Author: Jean
Published: Mar 22, 2018

This article assesses developments in the prevention and eradication of torture in Mozambique. Despite several positive efforts and advances made, acts of torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment and punishment are still perpetrated by members of the security forces, especially police officials, often with impunity. The culture of impunity for such serious offences is a direct threat to human rights and the rule of law in the country and seriously compromises the country’s public integrity. Two issues are of deep concern and require more efforts by the state, namely: a) addressing impunity and ensuring prompt and impartial investigations of all allegations of torture and other ill-treatment, and b) protecting victims and providing the necessary restitution, rehabilitation and compensation. In conclusion we provide recommendations on how to improve the situation. These are: engaging in outreach and advocacy; improving and strengthening the national legislative framework; strengthening institutions; developing mechanisms for the reporting of torture: monitoring and evaluating existing reporting mechanisms; improving conditions of detention; establishing effective oversight over places of detention, and by maintaining records to improve transparency and availability of information.

Centro de Formação Jurídica e Judiciária
Author: Jean
Published: Jun 13, 2017

Estudo Comparação sobre Constitucionalidade da Legislação Penal e Penitenciaria; Constitucionalidade da Legislação Penal e Penitenciaria em Moçambique. Estudo de Comparação sobre Caução; Estudo sobre Caução em Moçambique.

ACJR collaborates with Mozambican NGOs
Author: Jean
Published: Jun 08, 2017

Lukas Muntingh and Jean Redpath shared experiences of measuring performance and proposal writing with a range of Mozambican NGO's.

Mozambique's Judicial Training Institute hears perspectives on constitutionality and bail
Author: Jean
Published: Jun 07, 2017

ACJR researchers Gwen Dereymaeker and Kristen Petersen shared the results of their comparative investigations into the constitutionality of criminal procedures, and bail regimes, in selected African countries, to judges at the Centro de Formação Jurídica e Judiciaria (Judicial Training Institute) of Mozambique. ACJR associate Tina Lorizzo, of REFORMAR, presented the results relevant to Mozambique in particular.

Lançamento do Estudo "Impacto Socioeconómico da Prisão Preventiva em Quénia, Moçambique e Zâmbia"
Author: Jean
Published: Jun 06, 2017

O projeto procurou compreender e quantificar a forma como a decisão de deter um arguido afecta os direitos socioeconómicos, isto é, os recursos dos indivíduos, inclusive aqueles além das pessoas em prisão. Os locais de reclusão, selecionados para o estudo, estão situados nos principais centros urbanos do Quênia (Nairobi), Moçambique (Maputo) e Zâmbia (Lusaka). O projeto descobriu que, embora existam semelhanças significativas observadas entre os três Centros Urbanos, também há notáveis tendências particulares, no impacto socioeconómico em cada país.

A Comparative Study of Bail Legislation in Malawi, Mozambique and Burundi
Author: Jean
Published: Oct 12, 2016

The deprivation of liberty is a serious intervention in any person’s life, and therefore the possibility of releasing an accused person from custody pending trial is a fundamental part of criminal justice systems across the world. Criminal justice systems have developed various ways to ensure, at least in law, that accused persons appear for trial without depriving them of their liberty. Such release may be conditional or unconditional. Unconditional release usually takes the form of a warning to appear in court at a later date, while conditional release can be secured through bail, bond, surety, and supervision. This paper reviews the laws on conditional release in Burundi, Malawi and Mozambique. These three countries were selected on the basis that they represent not only different types of legal systems but Francophone, Anglophone and Lusophone legal traditions, respectively. --

Constitutionality of Criminal Procedure and Prison Laws in Africa A comparative study of Burundi, Côte d’Ivoire, Kenya, Mozambique and Zambia
Author: Jean
Published: Oct 01, 2016

This study reviews 41 rights of arrested, accused and detained persons under Burundian, Ivorian, Kenyan, Mozambican and Zambian law. These countries were chosen because they represent Anglophone, Francophone and Lusophone Africa as well as countries that have a civil law and common law tradition. The study begins by reviewing 17 rights of those arrested and detained in police custody; it goes on to examine 18 rights of accused persons; and ends by considering six rights of those detained in prison on remand or as sentenced prisoners. Each right is examined from three angles: first, whether it is recognised under international human rights law; secondly, to what extent the right is enshrined in the domestic constitution of the jurisdiction under review; and thirdly, to what extent the right is upheld and developed in subordinate legislation.

Author: Jean
Published: Apr 17, 2016

Reformar (Research for Mozambique) carries out research in criminal justice reform in Mozambique.

Pardons provide temporary relief for overcrowding in Mozambique
Author: Jean
Published: Jan 13, 2016

Around 1000 prisoners were pardoned by the President during his State of the Nation address in December 2015. While these pardons offer temporary relief for the overburdened penitentiary system, implementation of more comprehensive measures, which form part of ongoing legal reform, will be necessary to effect real change.

Muitos problemas que comprometem os direitos dos reclusos em prisão preventiva
Author: Jean
Published: May 01, 2015

Este artigo apresenta os resultados de uma pesquisa realizada em Maputo, em 2012, sobre a prisão preventiva. As condições de reclusão e de acesso à representação legal de um grupo de reclusos que aguardam julgamento são analisados dentro do contexto do sistema penitenciário então em vigor em Moçambique. Enquanto a autora está ciente de que o quadro jurídico-legal do sistema penitenciário avançou nos últimos três anos, a pesquisa mostra que as condições de reclusão e acesso à representação legal de um grupo de pessoas em prisão preventiva em 2012 não respondiam aos princípios internacionais e nacionais que regulavam o sistema penitenciário no país.

Mozambique promulgates new Penal Code
Author: Jean
Published: Dec 31, 2014

Constitutional amendments of 1990 and 2004 meant that the Criminal Code of 1886 no longer was in line with the political, social, cultural and economic reality of Mozambique. This revision of the of Criminal Code is intended to ensure the enjoyment of rights and freedoms of citizens.

Mozambique Pre-trial Detention Audit results launched
Author: Jean
Published: Sep 15, 2014

Results of an audit of pre-trial detention in Mozambique, carried out by Liga Moçambicana dos Direitos Humanos (the Mozambique Human Rights League) and CSPRI at the Community Law Centre of the University of the Western Cape, were presented at a seminar on 11 and 12 September 2014 in Maputo.

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