Angola elects first president in 37 years

dos-santosFrom PEDRO AGOSTO in Luanda, Angola
LUANDA, (CAJ News) – MILLIONS of Angolans are on Wednesday to participate in elections to choose a new president for the first time in
over 37 years.
Seven million people will vote out of a population of 28 million.
The president-elect will succeed José Eduardo dos Santos, who has been at the helm of the Southern African country since 1979.
His rule has been characterized by attacks on the rights to freedom of
expression, association and assembly.
For decades, Angolans have lived in a climate of fear, in which speaking
out was met with intimidation, imprisonment and enforced disappearance.
“José Eduardo dos Santos’ presidency is marked by his appalling human
rights record,” said Deprose Muchena, Amnesty International’s director for Southern Africa.
Muchena said the next government must end the systemic abuse of the
justice system and other state institutions to brutally silence dissent.
Criticising the president is currently considered a crime in Angola.
Criminal defamation laws are also regularly used to silence government
critics, particularly journalists and academics.
“The new administration must commit from the onset to the respect and
protection of human rights for all people in Angola,” Muchena said.
Dos Santos (74) has overseen the dominance of the People’s Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA) party.
Defense Minister João Lourenço (63), leads the race to succeed the veteran.
Angola, sub-Saharan Africa’s third largest economy and a key oil and
diamonds producer, gained independence from Portugal in 1975.

– CAJ News

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Posted by on Aug 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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