Angola may be entering a turning point in its history, motivated by the economic crisis, which makes it urgent to implement reforms. But at the political level, according to most observers, President Jose Eduardo dos Santos should leave the Presidency in 2022, when completing 43 years in power. For now, says the British researcher Alex Vines, Santos assured control of the main source of income in the country, Sonangol, when naming his daughter Isabel dos Santos to the Presidency of the oil company.
In his latest article “continuity and change in Angola,” for the journal International Affairs, Alex Vines, make a joint review of some of the major works on Angola edited in the last year, including Ricardo Soares de Oliveira, Justin Pierce, David Birmingham or Didier Peclard.
In the absence of an obvious political successor, “Vines, Santos named his daughter Isabella to lead reforms at Sonangol. “The intention is to protect the main generator of wealth in the country, but also the interests of the presidential family during this transition period.”
“Some have suggested that Isabel is being prepared for the Presidency: it is a possibility, but hardly feasible because she is of mixed race and was born out of Angola. Race and ethnicity have determined in the past who would be President, and probably will be again “, said Vines, responsible since 2002 by the African Affairs Chatham House–British Institute of international relations.
Oil is the main export and responsible for almost all of the Angolan GDP. Second says Vines, based in those Angolan politicians, authors are “addicted to oil income and the State company Sonangol was the epicenter of a parallel system.
According to Vines, “most observers expect JES is re-elected President of Angola for new mandate and retire in 2022. Since 2001 that on several occasions hinted that he was considering retiring, but he used those occasions to sweep opponents to the Presidency, eliminating their aspirations “. Santos recently announced his intention of retiring from political life in 2018.
The own João Lourenço, elected Vice President of the MPLA in the last Congress and the strongest name to appear alongside on the forthcoming presidential party list, has seen their aspirations crushed in the past, after which he began a long stretch in the wilderness.
For Vines, “the economic crisis which was installed in the country is strengthening the need for profound structural reforms and changes of direction in economic policy that is being followed. However, continues, “the elements that determine this change are complex and depend on political factors, geopolitical, of personality, of solidarity, of cost-benefit analysis and timing.
Leave A Comment Below