Johannesburg – The young Angolans taking to the street in a wave of protests against President Jose Eduardo dos Santos are a small group, but government has responded with a crackdown that takes the threat seriously.
The demonstrations against Dos Santos, who marked 32 years in power this month, started in March with about a dozen people and have refused to go away, growing to a peak of about 300 people this month.
Police have responded by jailing participants and unleashing dogs against them, and organisers say they have faced intimidation and death threats. Protests are now banned in Luanda’s city centre.
But the demonstrators have refused to back down – a relatively new phenomenon for Angola, where oil-rich elites wield vast and often unchallenged power.
“The new generation is not as afraid of the government,” Jang Nomada, a 29-year-old rapper who has helped organise the protests, told AFP.