Angola ruling party backs President Joao Lourenco for second term




Angolan President Joao Lourenco

Angola’s governing party has selected incumbent President Joao Lourenco as their candidate in next year’s election.

Members of the People’s Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA) on Friday overwhelmingly re-elected Lourenco as party leader at a congress held in the capital, Luanda.

It came just days after the main opposition party, UNITA, re-elected Adalberto Costa Junior as its leader, positioning him as the president’s main electoral rival.

The Presidential polls are due to be held on August 22.

Under Angola’s electoral system, the leader of the party with the majority of votes takes the top job.

The MPLA has been running the country since independence from Portugal in 1975.

Lourenco, 67, succeeded Jose Eduardo dos Santos as President in 2017.

He had served as defence minister under dos Santos who wielded absolute power over the country for 38 years.

Angola is rich in natural resources as it is is Africa’s third-biggest oil producer.

Lourenco has pledged to restore Angola’s oil-dependent economy and fight corruption.

ALJAZEERA