Angola: Fears of the Fatherless


Angola’s Chief of Military Intelligence and Security Services, General Antonio Jose Maria, better known as General “Ze Maria”, recently told a meeting with subordinates that President Jose Eduardo dos Santos had made “a grave mistake” in announcing that he would retire from politics in 2018.

Maka Angola has learned from reliable sources, that the meeting was ostensibly called for operational purposes. However, General Ze Maria was “visibly angry” over the presidential decision which apparently had “taken him by surprise”. He kept speculating aloud that the announcement may have been precipitated by the volatile socio-economic situation in Angola, for which the government has failed to come up with adequate solutions.

According to General Ze Maria, “the announcement would only serve to sow confusion amongst the party faithful”, given that the President as yet has no effective exit strategy to prevent political upheaval or worse.

Not that the General was offering any alternative suggestions. It seems that, all things considered, he would still prefer to keep Jose Eduardo dos Santos in power. As the saying goes: ‘Better the devil you know…’

Given that Ze Maria has been one of the president’s main supporters since 1979, it’s natural for him to show such devoted loyalty to his Commander-in-Chief who has, for decades, tolerated the way General Ze Maria repeatedly exceeded his authority and behaved like a mini-me despot.