Angola seizes Chinese properties built with looted State funds

0 28
Spread the love

This includes 24 buildings, more than 1,000 unfinished building and residence units, 380 acres of construction plots and hundreds of foundations for construction of buildings and residences in the Luanda municipalities of Viana and Belas.

Angolan President João Lourenço

The Government of Angolan President João Lourenço has seized assets belonging to a Chinese company that were allegedly the benefits of a corrupt relationship with the government of former President Eduardo dos Santos.

Angola’s National Service for Asset Recovery has seized dozens of properties held by Hong Kong-based China International Fund and its Angolan unit, CIF Angola, that were allegedly built with funds looted from the State when former President José Eduardo dos Santos was in power.

This includes 24 buildings, more than 1,000 unfinished building and residence units, 380 acres of construction plots and hundreds of foundations for construction of buildings and residences in the Luanda municipalities of Viana and Belas, the prosecutor-general’s office said in an emailed statement to Bloomberg.

The Ministry of Territorial Planning and Housing will be the custodian of the seized properties while prosecutors continue the criminal probes, the statement said.

CIF Angola was involved in many projects in the SADC nation during the reign of dos Santos, including the construction of the Angola International Airport.

The CIF Angola owners then used to be known for enjoying close relationships with the dos Santos administration, especially the dos Santos family itself.

The property seizure comes as dos Santos daughter, Isabella, is facing criminal charges in Luanda over her role in multimillion dollar projects undertaken when her father was in power.

Isabel dos Santos is accused of mismanagement and embezzlement of funds during her tenure at Sonangol,” Attorney General Hélder Pitta Grós told a news conference in January, according to the BBC.ALSO ON ZIMVOICE:  Russia gives citizenship to former Angolan president’s daughter accused of embezzling US$1.3bn

Sonangol is Angola’s state-owned oil firm.

Dos Santos, who is among a handful of formal suspects in the probe, is also suspected of “money laundering, influence peddling, harmful management … [and] forgery of documents, among other economic crimes.”

The prosecutor did not rule out requesting the support of international police agencies Interpol and Europol, according to the Angola Press Agency, to force dos Santos’ return from the U.K., where she currently resides.

João Lourenço was the handpicked successor of dos Santos, who had run the country since 1979, and whose cronies controlled much of the economy.

His daughter, Isabel, ran the national oil company, Sonangol, by far the country’s biggest source of hard currency. His son, José Filomeno, ran the $5bn sovereign wealth fund. Even in retirement, Mr dos Santos kept his role as leader of the ruling party.

Everyone assumed that he would wield power behind the scenes.

Yet since being sworn in, the soft-spoken Mr Lourenço has unleashed change that seemed unthinkable a few years ago. As well as trying to revive an economy battered by low oil prices (which have rebounded), he has mounted a spirited anti-corruption campaign. Zimbabwe voice

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: