Former Angolan president, Dos Santos is dead

Angola’s former president José Eduardo dos Santos has died at the age of 79.

The country’s presidency said the former president died on Friday morning at the Barcelona Teknon clinic after a prolonged illness.

However, a report said a spokesperson for the clinic declined to comment.

Dos Santos was in coma and had been receiving medical treatment since 2019.

Angola’s current head of state, João Lourenço has declared five days of national mourning starting on Friday, when the country’s flag will fly at half-mast and public events will be cancelled.

Dos Santos, one of Africa’s longest-serving leaders, stepped down five years ago. His rule was marked by a brutal civil war lasting nearly three decades against the US-backed (National Union for the Total Independence of Angola) UNITA rebels – which the former president won in 2002 – and a subsequent oil-fuelled boom.

He was replaced in 2017 by Lourenço, who, despite being from the incumbent’s People’s Movement for the Liberation of Angola, speedily decided to probe allegations of multibillion-dollar corruption during the ex-president era, targeting the former leader’s children.

Dos Santos, who was married four times, is survived by his current wife, Ana Paula, with whom he has three children. He is known to have at least three other children and various grandchildren.

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