Angola

Luanda (AFP) Angolans voted on Wednesday in an election marking the end of President Jose Eduardo dos Santos’s 38-year reign, with his MPLA party set to retain power despite an economic crisis. The MPLA, which has ruled since Angola’s independence from Portugal in 1975, is expected to defeat opposition parties stifled by Dos Santos’s authoritarian regime. Dos Santos’s unexpected retirement — reportedly prompted by poor health — has triggered the biggest political transition in decades for Angola, a leading African oil exporter. His chosen successor, however, is Joao Lourenco, aRead More
Luanda (AFP) Angolans vote Wednesday in an election marking the end of President Jose Eduardo Dos Santos’s 38-year reign, with his MPLA party set to retain power despite the economic crisis. The MPLA, which has ruled since Angola’s independence from Portugal in 1975, is expected to defeat opposition parties that are stifled by Dos Santos’s authoritarian regime. Dos Santos’s unexpected retirement — reportedly prompted by ill health — has triggered the biggest political transition in decades for Angola, a leading oil exporter in Africa. His chosen successor however is DefenceRead More
LUANDA (AFP) When Angolan President Jose Eduardo dos Santos steps down and his successor is chosen in Wednesday’s elections, it will bring to an end a 38-year reign dominated by his unrelenting authoritarian style. Though seldom seen in public, he has been a looming presence in daily life for as long as most Angolans can remember, maintaining fierce control over the country throughout its devastating civil war and recent oil boom. Now aged 74 and reportedly in poor health, Dos Santos became president in 1979, making him Africa’s second-longest-serving leaderRead More
Luanda (AFP) Despite fabulous oil riches, Angola remains one of the poorest countries in the world and is one of the most closed societies on the African continent. The southern African country was ravaged by a devastating civil war between 1975 and 2002 and has been led since 1979 by President Jose Eduardo dos Santos, who is to hand over power after Wednesday’s general elections. Here are five things to know about the country, which at 1,246,700 square kilometres (498,680 square miles), is almost twice as big as the USRead More
Luanda (AFP) Angola is heading for a historic change as the oil-rich country votes in an election marking the end of President Jose Dos Santos’ 38-year reign. The constitution does not provide for a presidential election, but says that the leader of the party which wins general elections should become head of state. Here are some key dates in Dos Santos’ authoritarian reign. – Civil war – On September 20, 1979, Dos Santos takes office as Angola’s president after the death of the country’s first post-independence leader, Agostinho Neto. AtRead More
Luanda (AFP) The likely next president of Angola, Joao Lourenco, is a ruling-party loyalist andformer general who endured several years out of favour after he angled for the top job in the 1990s. Since then, Lourenco, 63, has convinced key regime players he is the right man to succeed President Jose Eduardo dos Santos, who has ruled the oil-rich southwest African nation for 38 years. As the deputy president of the People’s Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA) and as defence minister until last month, Lourenco is “part ofRead More
Luanda (AFP) After nearly 40 years under the rule of President Jose Eduardo Dos Santos, millions of Angolans are angry and frustrated — and many seem determined to use Wednesday’s elections to express their hunger for change. Few of them are signed-up members of any opposition party, but throughout the election campaign they have flocked in large numbers to rallies held by both the UNITA and Casa-CE parties. Among their ranks are youths whose education has been cut short, leaving them bereft of skills, graduates who can’t find a job,Read More
Luanda (AFP) For the past 20 years, Angola’s most prominent human rights activist Rafael Marques de Morais has railed against outgoing President Jose Eduardo Dos Santos and his administration, exposing through his investigative work what he sees as the regime’s unfettered corruption. In an interview with AFP, the 45-year-old outspoken campaigner — who was convicted of defaming military generals in 2015 and handed a six-months suspended sentence — dismissed Wednesday’s vote as rigged, but predicted that this is “the beginning of the end” for the regime. In power since theRead More
Luanda (AFP) President Jose Eduardo dos Santos, who has ruled Angola since 1979, will not contest the August 23 election, marking a historic change in the oil-rich country. The constitution does not provide for a presidential election, but says that the post of head of state goes to the chief of the party which wins general elections. These are the key dates of Dos Santos’s long, iron-fisted rule: – Civil war – On September 20, 1979, Dos Santos takes office as Angola’s president after the death of the country’s firstRead More
Luanda (AFP) The likely next president of Angola, Joao Lourenco, is a ruling-party loyalist andformer general who endured several years out of favour after he angled for the top job in the 1990s. Since then, Lourenco, 63, has convinced key regime players he is the right man to succeed President Jose Eduardo dos Santos, who has ruled the oil-rich southwest African nation for 38 years. Currently defence minister and deputy president of the People’s Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA), Lourenco is firmly “part of the inner circle ofRead More