The chief of staff of the President of the Republic, as reported by the Portuguese television station, received millions of dollars of unknown origin, but with allegedly illicit connections to the company EMFC.
“If it is true, it is a very worrying situation. We hope that the competent authorities urgently make an inquiry to ascertain the veracity of the facts,” UNITA deputy Alcides Sakala told Novo Novo, stressing that the diversion of the purse, corruption and nepotism affects the rulers of the ruling party in a way that must be stopped urgently.
“For greater credibility in the fight against corruption, nepotism and the diversion of the public purse, the Government must accept submitting to inspection actions, submitting to audits and the parliament allowing the creation of Parliamentary Inquiry Commissions to assess the seriousness of this fight “, declared Sakala.
According to the deputy, for this fight to be effective, “there has to be a real separation of powers so that the judiciary does not suffer political pressure from the Executive to avoid subordinating to the interests of the Government and the President of the Republic in particular. “.
“One is left with the impression that there is indeed some promiscuity between the judicial and the Executive, with regard to issues related to the fight against corruption”, he added.
The member of the presidential college of CASA-CE, Manuel Fernandes, explained that in view of these complaints, those involved must make a public clarification for the good of their images.
“The investigation of Portuguese television, TVI 24, revealed Edeltrudes Costa’s business in important public contracts that allegedly earned him millions in euros. It is now up to those involved to make a public statement,” said Manuel Fernandes.
Manuel Fernandes said that corruption and nepotism must be combated in order to “prevent the state from becoming a monarchy”.
“The fight against corruption and nepotism requires judicial intervention and from all social classes, as it is a crime in the Constitution’s suits. It is very complicated to always hear these complaints that involve prominent figures in the country,” he added.
For the political analyst, Gilberto Guilhermino Jamba, “this complaint that the Angolan Government would be favoring the Edeltrudes Costa Office, head of the Office of the President of the Republic, João Lourenço, through public contracts with the company EMFC for the provision of various services , comes to show that addictions continue “.
“In the former and the current Executive, these vices continue. It is time for the Attorney General’s Office to start taking action now, because Angolans cannot continue to observe these successive scandals in silence”, he pleaded, lamenting that corruption in Angola affects fundamental rights.
For the analyst “the abuse of public office for personal gain ends people’s confidence in the Government and in institutions, reduces the effectiveness of justice in public policies and diverts taxpayers’ money”.
Isabel dos Santos, businesswoman and daughter of ex-President José Eduardo dos Santos, also came to the public to comment on Twitter on this subject, writing: “Edeltrudes Costa will have sent money to Panama, using a branch of the then Banco Espírito Santo (BES) in the Madeira free zone. Since João Lourenço took power, Edeltrudes Costa has been his right hand “.
Novo Jornal tried unsuccessfully to hear the MPLA on this matter.
Revelations of TVI 24
A TVI 24 report reported that the Angolan government was favoring Chief of Staff Edeltrudes Costa through public contracts with the company EMFC for the provision of various services.
According to TVI 24, among other situations denounced, this is a contract that was signed in early 2019 to modernize Angolan airports. In the documentation presented by the report, President João Lourenço would authorize the hiring of the Portuguese company Roland Berger and the immediate subcontracting of EMFC.
The resource acquired by the contract signed in February 2019 ended up in Portugal and would have been used to purchase luxury properties in several Portuguese locations, such as Sintra and Cascais.
Positions do not match fortune
Edeltrudes Costa was secretary general of José Eduardo dos Santos with the function of minister of state and head of the Civil House. TVI24 reports that it had access to bank statements that show that it would have, in Portuguese banks, the equivalent of 20 million euros, despite never having officially held positions that earned it great fortunes.
The fortune would have been used to buy the house in Cascais worth 2.5 million euros – which is in the name of Costa’s ex-wife and chairman of the Board of Directors of EMFC.
João Lourenço’s chief of staff also bought a 130,000-euro tour boat in Portugal and a luxury apartment on a property owned by US President Donald Trump in Panama.
According to the report, the funds used for this latest acquisition would have passed through Banco Espírito Santo, in the Madeira free zone, which is the element that Isabel dos Santos chose to highlight in her tweet.
The Portuguese central bank would have investigated the transfers involving Costa’s company, based on “serious failures in the prevention of money laundering and financing of terrorism”, according to TVI 24.
TVI 24 also refers to a provision of services to the National Electoral Commission in the last election held in Angola. The deal earned Costa a million euros to provide material for the ballot won by João Lourenço.