Ver Angola


Blinken: Angola is fighting corruption, but must give more space to civil society

The United States Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, said this Friday that "Angola is an increasingly important country" and praised the fight against corruption, whilst defending more space for civil society and the press.

: Reuters

"President João Lourenço is someone who is fighting corruption, we see that he has made significant progress, he understands very well the poison that corruption represents for development and the creation of opportunities, and he is taking very concrete steps to combat it" , said the North American official, equivalent to Minister of Foreign Affairs in European governments, responding to the question whether he considered Lourenço more trustworthy than his predecessor, José Eduardo dos Santos.

In an interview with Africa Report in Lagos, Nigeria, in French, Antony Blinken also argued that the fight against corruption involves, "at the same time, creating a more open system to truly combat corruption, giving it a greater role and with more space to civil society and the media, which play a critical role in exposing and combating corruption".

For Antony Blinken, the President of Angola "has a very important role in trying, through diplomacy, to manage the crises in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo and in Rwanda, where the process established by João Lourenço is very important in trying to find a solution diplomatically and not through war".

Therefore, he added, the country "is an increasingly important partner country, it was at the White House last year and the President, [Joe] Biden, asked us to follow the process, and that is the reason for this visit to Angola", concluded the North American official, on the last day of the visit to four African countries: Cape Verde, Nigeria, Angola and Ivory Coast.

Regarding the Lobito corridor, a railway infrastructure project that crosses Africa from Angola to Tanzania, passing through Zambia, Blinken said that "it is very important for Africa to have this project, not only because it facilitates transport and communication, but also because it enhances the internal market", particularly in the context of the implementation of the free trade agreement on the continent.

"Africa remains to explore the internal market, it is an opportunity that remains to be realized, because African countries trade more with the external market than with each other, and with the necessary infrastructure there will be much greater economic growth in the future", he concluded the government official in the interview with Africa Report.


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