Angola’s National Electoral Commission on Monday officially announced President Joao Lourenco and his Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA) as the winner of Wednesday’s presidential and parliamentary election, reported The African News.
The MPLA, under the leadership of President Lourenco, garnered 51.2% of the vote in last week’s election, while its closest rival, the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA) had its best-ever result with 44% of the vote.
The vote was the tightest in Angola’s history. About 6.4 million of the total 14 million registered Angolans voted in the election, according to the electoral commission.
“The CNE proclaims Joao Manuel Goncalves Lourenco president of the republic,” Angola’s election commission head Manuel Pereira da Silva told a news conference.
The two parties have faced off in four previous elections. The MPLA has been in power in Angola since the country got independence from Portugal in 1975. The party continues to face criticism over high levels of unemployment and poverty in the country. Its vote percentage was down from the 61% it gained in the previous election in 2017, while Unita’s share has increased up from 27%.
Last week, Unita’s leader Adalberto Costa Júnior rejected the provisional vote counting results, saying they did not match the party’s own tally.
“MPLA`s victory means a government that assumes its political commitments with courage and responsibility, an executive that is not afraid to break with the powers in place and to make the necessary changes”, re-elected President Lourenco to the people of the country.
The opposition parties have 72 hours’ time after the announcement of the final results to contest the results.
The election result announcement of Lourenco’s victory came a day after the funeral of Angola’s long-serving president Jose Eduardo dos Santos. Notably, Lourenço was the hand-picked successor to former President Santos, who ruled the country for 38 years.