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Three Brazilian TV channels (Globo, Record, and recently Band) broadcast their programming in Angola. Globo International has a production and distribution division that reaches over 170 countries (in Brazil, the network covers 98.6% of Brazilian territory, reaching 99.5% of the population).

By Americo Gomes.

 

Launched in Portugal in October 2007, the Globo Premium channel is available in several Portuguese stations. Globo has been in Angola since the 1980s, with the first soap operas. In this country, 160 thousand of the 500 thousand that watch the international version of the shows.

This network that enjoys presenting itself as honorable is associated with ZAP, property of Isabel Santos, daughter of the ex-president with the longest term in the country as a result of several fraudulent elections that were exclusively sustained by the Armed Forces and repression apparatuses.

ZAP started its activity in the Angolan market in April 2010 and is currently the biggest TV provider via satellite in Angola. In the first semester of 2011, it entered Mozambique and quickly became the leader in the provision of content and high definition channels in Portuguese.

Recently, the Portuguese channels SIC-News and SIC-International were suspended from the ZAP platform, replaced by the Band News channel. The SIC does not benefit from the sympathy of Santos’ regime for denouncing corruption scandals, aggressions practiced by the National Police against the people, and other abuses of power.

During the period of the elections, the SIC was the only TV channel that did not receive a VISA for their journalists, because the government was afraid they would report irregularities and electoral manipulation in favor of the MPLA.

Globo International produced the Revista África (Africa Magazine,) in association with the Angolan producer Promangol, holding of the Angolan group VMD, of the Brazilian Valdomiro Minoru Dondo, one of the richest and most powerful men in Angola,[1] target of the Le Coq Operation by the Federal Police (FP).[2]

Angola’s Santos

After passing away in Moscow, in September of 1979, Agostinho Neto left a divided country behind, not only by the civil war but for the internal divisions of the MPLA. Former militants and leaders of the MPLA, such as the sympathizers of Nito Alves and intellectuals of Revolta Ativa (Active Revolt) were arrested with the youth of the Communist Organization of Angola (COA) and Portuguese, English and American mercenaries, Congolese and South African militaries, and people from UNITA and FNLA, in the São Paulo jail, in Luanda, and in concentration camps in several parts of the country.

José Eduardo dos Santos took over in 1979, repressed the internal differences, and negotiated with UNITA. He adopted a new Constitution in 1992 that allowed a façade pluralism, and completely took over the market economy.

Elections took place on September 29 and 30 of 1992. José Eduardo got 49,57% of the votes, against 40.07% of Jonas Savimbi. The UNITA did not recognize the election results, resuming the Civil War. In 1993, the United States withdrew its support to UNITA and recognized the MPLA government.

The Civil War ended in 2002. After the death of Jonas Savimbi, UNITA gave up the armed struggle, agreeing to its integration into the Angolan Armed Forces.

Today, the Santos government is known for being corrupt, nepotistic, and dictatorial. In the eve of the presidential succession, the Santos clan -that includes nine sons of five different wives- constitutes one of the most powerful families in Africa.

In a country where 70% of the population lives on less than 2 dollars per day, the Santos family has an immense fortune, participating in the main companies and even in multinationals. When a great part of the country’s economy was privatized, they took control of several companies.

His daughter, Isabel dos Santos, is considered the richest woman in Africa and the “most important woman in Portugal,” married to the magnate and Congolese art collector, Sindika Dokolo.

She was named President of the state oil company Sonangol’ board in June of 2016. She controls Ubana 2000, a company that collects residues; UNITEL, a telecommunications company (the one that obtained the first moving license in Angola); the banks BFA, BIC ANGOLA (International Credit Bank,) and EuroBic, whose first actionist was Fernando Tales, former Minister of Finances of Portugal; ZAP, in partnership with the Portuguese NOS (group of communications and entertainment) and associate of Rede Globo; CONTIDIS, which manages the hypermarkets’ network Candando; SODIBA, of beverages production and distribution.

She also controls part of the diamond business through TransfricaInvestment Services (TAIS), in Gibraltar, acting in partnership with GroupGoldeberg and LevievWrellox, associate to Ascorp, and the communication company Kento and the energy company Esperanza, both with headquarters in Holland. Furthermore, Angolan businesswoman’s investments in Portugal are around €3 thousand million.

His brother, Eduane Danilo dos Santos, 23, got a bank for his birthday, the “Postal Bank of Angola,” with shared capital composed of public and private national companies, formed on the first day of September 2016 – days before Danilo’s birthday. The Angolan State is part of the group of actionists, through the Ministry of Technology, the BCI Bank, and the Post Service of Angola.

Until recently, only the eldest sons were bank owners in Angola. Apart from Isabel, Zenú Tchizé dos Santos and José Paulino dos Santos, “Coreon Dú.” On May this year, Danilo spent 500 thousand Euros in an auction of the Gala amFAR held in Cannes.

Oil in Angola

The importance of oil for the Angolan economy is 45% of the GDP and responds to 75% of the revenue. The fishing and diamond industries are important, but oil is the main source of resources. In the last decade, when the price of the oil barrel reached U$77.45, revenues from oil exploration reached around 85% of Angola’s general budget.

Nine of the 10 biggest exporting businesses in Angola are oil explorers, with sales that reach 1,6 thousand million Euros. The Ministry of Finances indicated that in 2016 the only company to appear amongst the 10 biggest exporting businesses in Angola outside of the oil sector was the state company Diamond Commercialization Society of Angola [Sodiam], which sold 170 million Euros abroad in precious gemstones already lapidated.

The first place on the list is occupied by the National Fuel Society of Angola (Sonangol) EP. In third place is the Cabinda Gulf Oil Company, subsidiary of the North-American Chevron. The Sonangol Research and Production and the Sonangol Distributor (both from the Sonangol group,) along with Exxon, BP, and ENI are amongst the biggest 10 exporting companies in Angola. The branch of the French oil Total is in the 10th position.

Sonangol is the state company concessionaire of exploration and responsible for the research in the sector. 90% of its gross profit is sent to public safes. The remaining 10% are responsible for maintaining all of the controlling structure of exploration and its expansion. It concentrated great part of the highly specialized labor force. Despite its proportions, it does not move more than 0,5% of the total labor force of Angola, and it is an industry with an elevated environmental cost, causing serious health problems to the population.

Such wealth leads to a rentier State, a corrupt government, and an impoverished population. With Isabel dos Santos in the presidency of Sonangol’s Council, the European economic press reports the disappearance of 32 to 50 billion dollars from the company’s safes.

Exxon-Mobil is one of Sonangol’s associates, for the exploration of the reserves in the Angolan coast’s deep waters. It is also an associate in corruption, with few competitors across the world. Almost all of the 2 million barrels/day go to the US. Angola is an important and trustworthy supplier. It is easy to understand why the US abandoned UNITA, financed by the CIA, and now supports the ex-guerrilla and ex-Marxist government of the People’s Movement for the Liberation of Angola.

Petrobras paid around 500 million dollars and spent over 200 million dollars to explore four oil blocks in Angola. The company drilled dry wells and had a giant damage from the operation in Angola. However, according to the testimony of Nestor Cerveró, informer, this did not matter much, since the objective was to prepare the numbers and get bribes to finance Lula’s presidential campaign.

According to the Economist Intelligence Unit, until 2016 Angola’s economy should have overcome South Africa’s, which is today the strongest one in the continent.

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Translation: Deby Leite.

Notes:

[1] http://peroladasacacias.net/2017/06/dono-da-macon-e-alvo-de-operacao-que-investiga-desvio-de-us-45-milhoes-do-bna/

[2] By request of the French Justice, the Federal Public Ministry, in partnership with the FP, is investigating the use of mediators in contracts between the Angolan government and foreign companies in the production of currency through the payment of US$4

5 million in bribes.