Angola

The southern African nation is now peaceful and petro-dollars are pouring in. Yet the greatest beneficiaries are the United States, Great Britain and Portugal, the evil triad that laboured in vain to abort the Angolan dream

This weekend’s edition of the weekly newspaper Semanário Angolense ended up in a bonfire. Last Saturday morning, Media Investe, the company that owns the Angolan weekly Semanário Angolense, decided to censor the edition, of October 27, because it included an almost full version of the speech of the National Union’s for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA) leader, Isaías Samakuva, on the State of the Nation.

Oil has turned post-war Angola into one of the world's fastest growing economies and Cabinda, which produces a daily average of 500,000 barrels, is the source of nearly a third of its very lucrative export. But for all the liquid gold and associated development, Cabinda remains one of the most under-developed regions in Angola.

Angola's top court recently rejected appeals by the main opposition Unita and two smaller parties over alleged irregularities in an election won comfortably by the MPLA party of President Jose Eduardo dos Santos last month. The ruling by the Constitutional Court - Angola's highest legal body - means the opposition parties have run out of legal avenues to contest the vote outcome and paves the way for Dos Santos to be sworn in.

On 16 July, civil society organisations demanded the postponement of the elections scheduled for August 31 over claims of a lack of adequate provisions for free and fair polls. A day earlier, police arrested several hundred demonstrators for alleged public disorder at the Sao Paolo market. In the coming weeks, Luanda and major cities are likely to experience an upsurge in public protests from opposition parties, war veterans and civil society groups.

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