It was with great concern that Friends of Angola (FoA) learnt of the attacks carried out on February 19, 2020 against a number of citizen groups demonstrating against the new president ‘s inauguration of the National Electoral Commission (CNE) Manuel Pereira Smith “Maneco.”
According to eyewitnesses reports and information found on media sites, the police not only used force on the protesters, but also assaulted journalists and used tear gas at a primary school where some of the protesters had taken refuge.
As a result of this action taken by the National Police, there was commotion inside the school, where it is reported that children and parents were crying with some even fainting and having to be transported to another yard near the school.
In recent days citizens who have passed through the National Assembly have been harassed by police officers.
These recurring distasteful acts being carried out by the Angolan authorities is in violation of the Constitution of the Republic of Angola in their art. 47 and other international standards that enshrine respect for the rights of citizens.
FoA stands with the protestors because we understand that according to the law and constitution, a citizen who has been indicted on criminal proceedings in the Supreme Court cannot be named onto the CNE. This action from the authorities goes beyond disrespecting the wishes of citizens as well as the constitution.
Finally, FoA reiterates that the Angolan judicial authorities put an immediate stop to the grave violations of human rights violations in respect to the Constitution of the Republic of Angola, in particular for ones right of assembly of peaceful demonstration and expression.
Luanda, 20 February 2020
By Friends Of Angola