Outgoing Angola President And Family Still Hold Reins Of Power


After 38 years as president of Angola, Jose Eduardo Dos Santos left the nation’s highest office 27 of September but not without making sure he and his family continue to maintain control.
Following an election last month, former defence minister Joao Lourenco was sworn into power, but only after Dos Santos passed decrees shoring up his power and leaving doubts over how much room to manoeuvre the new president will have.
There is the special constitutional title dos santos created for himself: “President of the Republic Emeritus Honorary “, which gives him and close family members immunity from prosecution.
There is the decree he signed freezing appointments of military, security and intelligence chiefs until 2025, ensuring his close circle of allies retains control. He also promoted 165 senior police commanders. Not least is the fact that he remains head of the ruling Movement for the Popular Liberation ( MPLA ), retaining the power to control the direction of the government.
However, Lourenco has said Dos Santos will not wield power behind the scenes.
Under Dos Santos, 74, oil – rich Angola has become known as a kleptocracy where for decades he used his sweeping power to enrich his own family and members of a tiny elite, while the country remains one of the least developed in the world. Billions of dollars in oil renevue have gone missing without explanation, according to human rights watch.
The country is remarked as one of the most corrupt in the world, at 163 of 167 nations on the corruption perception index published by non government corruption watch dog Transparency International. Meanwhile, more than 36 percent of the population live on less than $ 2 a day, according to the World Bank.