Angolan president fires armed forces, spy bosses in latest purge

João Lourenço has been cracking down on corruption in Angola. (Reuters pic)

LUANDA: Angolan President João Lourenço fired the chief of staff of the armed forces and the head of the foreign intelligence agency on Monday, his latest moves against officials tainted by graft allegations or links to his predecessor José Eduardo dos Santos.

Lourenço succeeded dos Santos last September, pledging to tackle an endemic culture of corruption and bring economic reforms to Angola, Africa’s second-largest producer of crude oil, which is marred by widespread poverty despite its oil wealth.

General Geraldo Sachipengo Nunda, the head of the armed forces before his firing, was named by prosecutors last month as a suspect in an investigation of a scheme to negotiate a fraudulent international credit line of US$50 billion (RM195 billion).

André de Oliveira Sango, a long-time dos Santos loyalist, was made foreign intelligence chief over a decade ago.

Their firings were announced in a presidential decree broadcast on the national public radio station. Neither could be reached for comment.

José Filomeno dos Santos, the son of Angola’s ex-president, was charged last month with fraud relating to a US$500 million (RM2 billion) transaction out of an account belonging to the central bank, a clear sign that the former first family has lost its grip on power.