The leader of Angola’s largest opposition UNITA party charged that the ruling party was creating an undemocratic one-party state and suggested that there was a chance the election’s outcome might be challenged.
Angola is gearing up for a vote on Wednesday that is likely to be the tightest since the first multi-party election in 1992. The MPLA, of current President Joao Lourenco, has governed the country since it won independence from Portugal in 1975.
“It is a one-party regime, a big cancer that the country must get rid of,” UNITA leader Adalberto Costa Junior told Reuters in an interview, adding that the MPLA does not allow Angola to be a democracy.
The country, Africa’s second-biggest oil producer, emerged from a 27-year civil war between the MPLA and UNITA in 2002. read more
Some critics of the government have voiced concern the election may be tainted. There are only 2,000 observers to cover a country twice the size of France, the final vote counting from all stations has been centralised in the capital Luanda, and some opinion polls have been restricted. read more
The MPLA did not reply to a request for comment about election transparency and fraud. It has previously said it would respect the result of the vote.
UNITA and civil society have accused the MPLA of controlling the country’s main institutions, from the courts to the media. Lourenco declined a request for interview, but speaking in March said the Angolan courts exercised their powers independently.