I’m returning to Niassa province for the first time in nearly two years. I am super anxious to get to know the place again and see my friends from the peasant farmers movement. I never imagined it would take so long to go back to Lichinga, but everything depended on professional circumstances.
My mission now is to contribute to a workshop on community lands, and how to protect them.
I fear that we are living a sort of Berlin Conference 2.0 in this isolated corner of the continent. Beyond the industrial pine and eucalyptus plantations of the Swedish and Norwegians, mining is set to take over the province. Since my last visit, we have learned that the Brazilian company Vale do Rio Doce wants to mine coal in Niassa. That the province probably has uranium deposits and that it has filled up with small mining exploration concessions.
I also go to Lichinga tomorrow knowing that it will be my last trip in this position, as I have tired of the aid sector and resigned. (For those curious to read it – my farewell letter.) I also want to try and start imagining other ways to accompany and collaborate with my friends in Niassa in the future.