Angola denies barring ex-President dos Santos from leaving country

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José Eduardo dos Santos, Angola's former president, in Luanda on August 17, 2011. PHOTO | AFP

Angolan government on Wednesday denied barring former president José Eduardo dos Santos from leaving the country.

Dos Santos returned to Angola’s capital Luanda in September last year after living in Barcelona since 2019.  He had initially travelled to Spain in 2019 for a routine medical examination.

Earlier in the week, a local website made a report claiming that the former President had been barred from leaving Angola and that his benefits had been cut.

The Ministry of Telecommunications, Information Technologies and Social Communication rejected the allegations published on Club-k.net.

“The information provided by this portal is false,” a statement said.

“President José Eduardo dos Santos, since 2017, has never failed to benefit from the institutional support to which he is entitled under the law, both in the territory and during the, almost, three years he has been away receiving medical care outside the country.”

According to the ministry’s statement, the former Head of State does not need authorisation from anyone to travel to any part of the world.

“It is very irresponsible to deal with the intimate life of a former Head of State to the point of claiming that he is suffering from cancer, something that is not known to the Angolan authorities,” the statement added.

Dos Santos succeeded António Agostinho Neto in 1979, who ruled Angola for four years after independence from Portugal in 1975.

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