Ver Angola


Angolan student in China appeals: “Don't leave us here, please”

Angolans studying in China - whose number is estimated at over 200 - are using social networks to denounce the desperate scenario they are experiencing due to the coronavirus outbreak. Empty supermarket shelves and lack of support from the country are some of the complaints that students have been denouncing.


In one of the videos that has gained a lot of attention in the social networks, a young student appears in tears when she says that angolans in the country have been going hungry.

"We students in China, in Wuhan province - which is currently the province most affected with the coronavirus - are having a hard time, we are starving. Here the Chinese are fighting for food, imagine us foreigners as we are", starts by describing the student, Ivânia, with a trembling voice.

Throughout the video, the Angolan woman criticizes our country's embassy several times: "The embassies of the other countries are coming, they are setting up tents, they are giving basic food basket, they are supporting their patriots and us? Where is our embassy? Which so far has sent a message to follow the rules," he says, adding that "currently leaving home without a mask, without appropriate clothes is at risk of not coming back.

"So far we have not received any support," says the student, recounting that she has been living in China for five years.

Ivânia spared no criticism of the embassy, stressing that during the years she is in the country she has seen several Angolans deported for problems with obtaining visas: "Here there were already Angolans who were deported, with visa problems, who had to return because they got tired of sending e-mails to the embassy and the embassy did not respond. When are they going to start listening to us?", he asked.

With her voice failing, the student still asks if the embassy is not "seeing the immensity of the deaths" in the Chinese city. "Do as the other embassies of other countries do and do not abandon us here, please," appealed the student.

The cry for help has been constant and also the leader of an Angolan student movement in China has spoken about the situation. According to Luís Leite, the various Angolan students who are scattered throughout China are unable to leave their homes because of the safety regulations adopted. As for those who are able to go out to buy food and other products, they usually return empty-handed since supermarket shelves are empty.

"I've lived here for six years, we've never seen any support from the embassy," he says, telling us that in China, especially in the city of Wuhan, everything is closed, transport is not moving and supermarkets that are open are a battlefield since the "Chinese are fighting for food. "We need urgent help," he adds.

Speaking this Tuesday to the Lusa agency, the Angolan student also said that the embassy contacted the students asking them to heed the advice of the Chinese authorities regarding the virus, but that was all it took.

"It is a step," said Luis Leite, because "at least he heard the students' distress," but action is needed.

"We are fed up with words, we want action, because we are seeing friends from other countries with their embassies reacting, and ours not", he said.

This Tuesday the Secretary of State for the Hospital Area, Leonardo Inocêncio, assured that "no Angolan scholarship holder" in China has been contaminated, saying that the authorities "are concerned" and are monitoring the situation.

"[The coronavirus] is a major concern on the part of the government to protect citizens inside, like our grantees in China. At the moment there is no case among our students in China and it is also a concern of the Chinese Ambassador to Angola who will have a meeting today with the Minister of Health," he said in a press conference when questioned by Lusa.

Leonardo Inocêncio said that the issue will also be one of the points being addressed at Tuesday's meeting between the Minister of Health, Silvia Lutucuta, and the Chinese ambassador to Angola, Gong Tao.

Lusa contacted the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to react to the concerns and denunciations of the last days of students in China, but the matter was referred to later.


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