Activists jailed ahead of Angola polls

Angola pollsFrom PEDRO AGOSTO in Luanda, Angola
LUANDA, (CAJ News) – ANGOLA is accused of using police to suppress public protests ahead of presidential elections set for August.
In the latest in series of tensions between government and civil society organisations, activists are demonstrating against the detention of seven colleagues who have been sentenced to 45 days in jail for “crimes of rebellion and criminal conspiracy.”
This follows their participation in a protest calling for transparency in the election.
In addition to the 45 days in prison, the activists have been fined 65 000 kwanzas (R5 150).
Rights groups alleged the seven were not given a fair trial. There are also reports that they were beaten and suffered other ill-treatment during their arrest.
The arrest and detention of the activists have sparked demonstrations in Southern Africa’s largest country.
Deprose Muchena, Amnesty International’s regional director, said Angolan authorities have frequently used the police to stifle public demonstrations.
Demonstrators are often arrested, imprisoned and even disappeared for expressing themselves.
The former Portuguese colony will hold elections to choose a new president to succeed long-time ruler, Jose Eduardo Dos Santos.
He has been in power since 1979.
Defence minister, Joao Lourenco, is tipped to take over.
More than 9 million will participate in the poll that is projected to retain the Movement for the Liberation of Angola in power.
CAJ News

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Posted by on May 23 2017. Filed under Africa & World, Featured, National, News, Regional. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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