(ANSA) – LUANDA, AUG 28 – The state funeral of former president José Eduardo dos Santos, who died last July 8 at the age of 79 in a clinic in Barcelona, where he was hospitalized, is held today in the Angolan capital Luanda for cardiac arrest. A dozen heads of state and government are expected for the official ceremony in Piazza della Repubblica, in the center of the capital. The state funeral will be led by current president Joao Lourenço, appointed by dos Santos as his successor, elected in 2017 and close to obtaining a second term after last week’s elections.
Succeeded in 1979 by Agostinho Neto, historical leader of the MPA (Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola) in the liberation struggle from Portugal and the first president of independent Angola, dos Santos was head of state for 38 years. He had been living in Spain since 2019.
A funeral procession will then take the remains to the cemetery, where the former president will be buried. José Eduardo dos Santos made Angola one of the main oil producers on the continent along with Nigeria, but is accused of using this fortune to get rich with his family, while the rest of the country has remained one of the poorest on the planet.