What has happened to the sixteen-thousand young Mozambicans who lived in the GDR for more than seven years as Vertragsarbeiter (contract workers) and had to leave in 1990 when the GDR collapsed? Malte Wandel lived in Mozambique in 2009–10 and has documented in Einheit, Arbeit, Wachsamkeit (Unity, Work, Vigilance) the traces of an attachment that, twenty years after their return, is marked by economic injustice and uncertainty. The GDR deducted as much as eighty percent of their wages and sent it back to Mozambique as pension payments – the workers were supposed to receive the money on their return. The government is keeping it, seemingly wanting to wait out the conflict. “We want to have a celebration. It would be easy. There is a big church, right here. We could borrow two hundred chairs. We could slaughter a cow, roast something, and drink a few beers. But unfortunately only the Germans can celebrate this day. We have no reason to celebrate,” said José Alfredo Cossa, the president of the association Madgermanes (for “Made in Germany”), in perfect German on November 9, 2009, at the Base Central Madgermany in Maputo.

Installation view, Halle 14, Leipzig 2012 
© Produzieren/ Arthur Zalewski

José Alfredo Cossa
2010, photography, 40 × 50 cm

Vorläufiger Personalausweis (temporary identity card)
2009, photography, reproduction, 14,5 × 20,7 cm

Avenida 24 de Julho
2010, photography, 60 × 75 cm

Praia do Wimbe
2009, photography, 60 × 75 cm

Postkarte aus Oschatz (Postcard from Oschatz, 1988) 
(1988) 2010, reproduction, 10,5 × 15 cm

Wohnzimmer von Nelson Ernesto Monheguete (Living room from Nelson Ernesto Monheguete)
2010, photography, 40 × 50 cm

Aurelio Jonas Timane
2010, photography, 40 × 50 cm

2009, photography, 60 × 75 cm

Óscar Dinis Amadeu
2009, photography, 60 × 75 cm

Avenida Salvador Allende
2009, photography, 40 × 50 cm

José Alfredo Cossa in Zeulenroda (1988)
2009, reproduction, 18 × 24 cm

Lied (german) (1990)
2010, text from Nelson Ernesto Monheguete

Lied (english) (1990)
2010, text from Nelson Ernesto Monheguete