Home Politics & Policy Angola to hold elections on 23 August, President Dos Santos to step down

Angola to hold elections on 23 August, President Dos Santos to step down



Angola’s Council of the Republic, a presidential group that consults on national decisions, has proposed that the country holds its national elections on 23 August, local media in the country report.

The proposal however still has to get approval from President Jose Eduardo dos Santos.

The 74-yar-old, who has ruled the Southern African nation for 38 years, is expected to step down this year, but will still retain control of the powerful ruling MPLA party.

Dos Santos, Africa’s longest serving leader, confirmed in February that he would not seek another term in the coming elections.

The MPLA chose Defence Minister Joao Lourenco, 63, as its presidential candidate last December.

Dos Santos, a communist-trained oil engineer and a veteran of the guerrilla war against Portuguese rule, will remain president of the MPLA, retaining sweeping powers over what has become Africa’s No. 2 crude producer and third largest economy.

After constitutional changes in 2010, Angola does not directly elect a president but the leader of the winning party in the general elections automatically becomes head of state.

Cabinet spokesman Joao Maria de Sousa assured Angolans that systems were already in place to ensure the country hold peaceful and fair elections this year.

“All the political, parliamentary, financial, logistical and security conditions are in place for transparent and unhindered general elections,” he said.

Angola’s constitution passed in 2010 limits a president to two five-year serving terms.

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