Rafael Marques de Morais


José Eduardo dos Santos - who shares with Equatorial Guinea's Teodoro Obiang Nguema the infamy of being Africa's longest-ruling president - is becoming increasingly tyrannical as his regime faces growing popular resistance. In this open letter, Angolan ward-winning investigative journalist and human rights activist speaks out his mind about the political situation in the oil-rich southern African nation.


Angolan political activists exercising their constitutional right to peaceful protest face illegal arrest, torture and assassination in the hands of the security forces. The justice system has also been compromised to protect the government of President Jose Eduardo dos Santos.


Violence against the youth, who have been organizing anti-government protests, is the most prominent aspect of the campaign by the regime to entrench itself in power. Yet, a more sinister operation has been unfolding: kidnappings and torture.


The puzzling question remains: Why would the two political activists be kidnapped when the protest they had planned had already been aborted?

Something fishy is definitely going on in the belated trial of journalist Ramiro Aleixo over articles he wrote nearly five years ago. It is an extraordinary opportunity to evaluate the Angolan judicial system.


'How can profitable diamond mining, in a peaceful country with such a fast-growing economy, become the source of so much violence?'


This is a brief narrative of the power struggles between the president and his own party since the establishment of a multiparty system in 1991. It features deployment of constitutional coups, patronage and legal measures to address such internal rifts, as well as the consequences that reverberate today.


The new hypermarket is one of many businesses belonging to a fast-growing empire owned by senior public officials, which over the last three years has become the biggest player in the national economy.

http://www.pambazuka.org/images/articles/568/Unknown.gifThe company contracted to market Angola overseas is owned by the president’s children. While two-thirds of the population survives on less than $2 a day, the president and his protégés plunder the country.


Last year, Angola’s president authorised the extension of a mining concession 'primarily to the benefit of his daughter', Tchizé dos Santos, making a mockery the government’s words on ‘good governance, transparency and public service’, writes Rafael Marques de Morais.