Angola’s ruling party candidate confident of victory

Menongue – João Lourenço, the Angolan ruling MPLA party candidate in elections to choose a new President has said he is optimistic about the party’s victory in the elections scheduled for August 23 in order to continue to implement programmes that guarantee the well-being of the Angolan people.

Lourenço, the country’s current Defence Minister, made the pledge last Friday during his presentation in Menongue, eastern Cuando Cubango province.

“We will manage to win the battle of August 23 in order to ensure the victory over the battle of economic development,” he said.

Lourenço pointed to the Battle of Cuito Cuanavale and others such as that achieved in Peace and National Reconciliation, considered an irreversible fact in Angolan society.

As for the challenge of August 23, Lourenço hopes to count on the total participation of Cuando Cubango province, stressing that the people of this region were victorious.

On the social development of the province, taking into account its own characteristics, the candidate mentioned resources like abundant water, arable and virgin land and a lot of forest as well as the local development of agriculture.

He also spoke of business agriculture, which, as a general rule, requires large expanses of land.

According to the politician, the province has the potential to develop this sector to meet the local needs and those of the country’s inhabitants and for export.

Also vice president of the MPLA party, Lourenço, highlighted the launch in the region of the Okavango-Zambezi Cross-border Conservation project that covers Angola, Botswana, Namibia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe to create jobs and wealth for the region.

On the Cuando Cubango province, he recalled that the region is the country’s second largest province after Moxico, and it is far from the coast and ports.

He added that the government emerging from the August elections would pay special attention to the improvement and expansion of the road and rail network in the country.

With regard the provinces of Cuando Cubango, Moxico, Lunda Sul and Lunda Norte, which are in the same situation, far from the coast, Lourenço said that they needed road network to ensure their development.

The MPLA candidate reiterated that the Executive would continue to work, using the Armed Forces with support of international partners, so that the country could be one day free of landmines. He also stressed his government’s commitment to the demining process in the country.

Lourenco was presented as MPLA candidate in the provinces of Cunene, Namibe, Huíla, Bié, Cabinda, Lunda Norte, Cuanza Norte and Luanda.  He is set to replace Angola’s long-running President Eduardo dos Santos who will step down from office in August.

Meanwhile, the country’s main opposition, UNITA party, last Tuesday submitted to the Constitutional Court in Luanda its candidates for the presidency and parliament.

Supported by 15,000 signatures from around the country, the candidacy was formally effected by UNITA’s official José  Pedro Cachiungo.

As per the political parties law, the contesting parties are supposed to submit their electoral candidacy to the Constitutional Court in 20 days time (2-21 May).

The head of State released a decree on 25 April this year, upon consultation with the Council of the Republic a day earlier. The president’s consultation body decided to set the election for 23 August.

UNITA has as its presidential candidate its current president, Isaias Samakuva.

According to the electoral law, contesting parties are required to submit their candidacies for the poll.  – Angop.

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