Ver Angola


NGOs call for popular referendum on local elections

Three civil society organizations urged the President of the Republic, João Lourenço, to hold a referendum on the new political-administrative division and the first municipal elections, initially scheduled for 2020.


At a press conference, representatives of Friends of Angola, Omunga and Movimento Jovens para as Autarquias underlined that the Angolan head of state "assumed of his own free will that the first municipal elections in Angola would take place in 2020" and two years later he announced the new political-administrative division, from 18 to 20 provinces and from 164 to 581 municipalities.

"Today, unfortunately, the same President of the Republic leads a set of maneuvers that aim to make the institutionalization of municipalities unfeasible, allowing his party's agenda to subvert State policy and the country's progress", considered the three organizations.

The group reported that it requested audiences, on the 5th of this month, with the President of the Republic and the President of the National Assembly, but without response, which they considered to be a demonstration of the "deplorable lack of interest in listening to other sensitivities".

For the activists, "a society is not only governed by laws, but also by morals; and it is extremely dangerous for a country to have a President of the Republic who is unaware of the value of his word".

In the opinion of the three organisations, the Government's argument that the proposed new political-administrative division will bring public services closer to citizens, "is clearly blurred by the current one-person and concentrated governance model".

"No matter how beautiful the language that the executive uses to justify and defend his proposal, the undeniable truth is that it is unnecessary in view of the reality and needs of the country, because the problems that affect citizens, from elementary to elementary others are consequences of the monocular vision and management of power and the lack of commitment of the rulers with the country", they highlighted.

The three organizations repudiated the Government's announcement that the consultation process throughout the country was concluded and that the proposal had a favorable vote by the people.

"We take advantage of this communication to express our revulsion against the minister's pronouncements regarding the alleged consultation, which only heard people from the political party orbit, excluding the overwhelming majority of Angolans, recipients and beneficiaries of public policies and holders of original power", they stressed.

According to the activists, "the current model of governance that the MPLA [Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola] insists on maintaining has made the country ungovernable, the State bankrupt".

"Today the number of children out of the education system grows; precarious health; lack of drinking water, robberies and murders in all neighborhoods of the country and at all times; the high levels of unemployment, and of misery and their advents increase of uncontrolled manner; the constant attacks on all freedoms and other rights; that is, we are talking about a country without peace", they indicated.

"These are problems that cannot be solved with an increase in the number of provinces and municipalities, but, first, with the devolution of power; second, with the commitment of institutions and government officials to the public service", they added.

According to the participants, "it is urgent to implement the municipalities to the detriment of a new political-administrative division", so they appealed to the National Assembly to schedule the discussion of the last diploma for the approval and conclusion of the municipal legislative package.

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