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Estádio da Machava: Wikis

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Estádio da Machava is a multi-purpose stadium in Machava, a mainly residential town in the northwestern outskirts of Maputo, Mozambique. It is used for football matches and can hold 45,000 spectators [1]. The stadium, built by the Portuguese colonial government of Mozambique, was inaugurated on 30 June 1968 and named Estádio Salazar at the time. It is now owned by Clube Ferroviário do Maputo.

A couple of miles away, there is Machava prison, a huge penitentiary complex built in the early 1950s for common criminals. With the beginning of the independence guerrilla warfare led by Frelimo in 1964, PIDE, the Portuguese dictatorship's political police, created a special section in the complex where it would keep political opponents and prisoners of war under custody.

After Mozambique's independence in 1975, the new government, led by marxist-orientated Frelimo, continued to use this section of the Machava penitentiary for political prisoners. Though most of its infrastructures, such as classrooms, an infirmary, a library, an open-air cinema and a chapel, quickly deteriorated and became useless, it continued to serve the same purpose of repressing any opposition to the new ruling power. Yet this time the detainees were so-called «reactionaries». SNASP (Serviço Nacional de Segurança Popular), a political police created by the new Mozambican government, commonly employed torture and other degrading forms of treatment, both as punishment and as a means to obtain «confessions».

The political section in the Machava complex was also used by Frelimo as a stopover for prisoners on their way to the so-called «campos de reeducação», places in uninhabited areas of Central and Northern Mozambique where they were supposed to become ideologically reeducated, but many would die of illness, starvation and exposure.

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Coordinates: 25°55′2.73″S 32°31′34.64″E / 25.917425°S 32.5262889°E / -25.917425; 32.5262889

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