Campaigning officially began Sunday for Mozambique's presidential, national and provincial elections.

In a televised address, President Armando Guebuza urged voters to conduct the October 28 elections with civility to strengthen national unity and peace.

The president and his ruling Frelimo party are being challenged by a divided opposition.

They face Afonso Dhlakama of the main opposition Renamo party, and Daviz Simango of the breakaway Democratic Movement of Mozambique.

Simango, the mayor of Beira, split from Renamo earlier this year, taking key opposition officials with him.

The Renamo party was a rebel movement during Mozambique's long civil war. It has been the country's main opposition party since signing a peace deal with the government in 1992.

Seventeen political parties and two coalitions are also running for seats in Mozambique's parliament in next month's elections.

It will be the fourth election since the coastal country introduced  the multiparty system 15 years ago. 

Some information for this report provided by AFP and Reuters.