Angolan President Jose Eduardo dos Santos, has personally confirmed the news that he will not run again for the presidency of the oil-rich country during elections scheduled for August this year.
“The central committee of the MPLA approved the name of candidate Joao Lourenco at the top of the list for the August elections,” dos Santos said on Friday at the opening of an extraordinary congress of the ruling party.
News of dos Santos’ retirement from office after nearly four decades was widely reported in 2016 when the ruling party chose another candidate, Joao Lourenco. But today’s declaration is his first personal endorsement of the party’s successor.
The central committee of the MPLA approved the name of candidate Joao Lourenco at the top of the list for the August elections.
Angolan President dos Santos will not seek new mandate in 2017 (State broadcaster)— africanews (@africanews) December 2, 2016
The ruling party in December 2016 named defence minister, Lourenco as its candidate for the polls 2017 polls. He is also the Vice President of the ruling MPLA party and will be widely expected to win.
Angolans have long speculated the president’s next move since he said last March that he would stand down in 2018. Eduardo dos Santos has been in power since 1979.