Saudi Arabia grants over US$100 million to Angola

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has approved the granting of a loan worth US$110 million for the implementation of an industrial project in the municipality of Catumbela, Angolan province of Benguela.

This was confirmed Wednesday to the press by that country’s Counselor of the Royal Court Ahmed Bin Abbulazizi Kattan at the end of an audience the Angolan president João Lourenço granted to him in Luanda.

Ahmed Bin Abbulazizi Kattan, who did not specify the industrial project, said the meeting with the Angolan Head of State discussed, among other issues, the exchange of information of interest to both countries.

Ahmed Bin Kattan said, precisely, he had informed the Angolan Head of State about the instructions from the King of Saudi Arabia to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of that country on the opening of the Embassy in Angola, as soon as possible.

João Lourenço was also briefed on the preparations for the Saudi Arabia-Africa Summit set for November in the Middle East country.

In recent years, the political and diplomatic authorities of Angola and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia have been working on strengthening bilateral cooperation and identifying new areas to deepen the partnership.

In September 2018, the two countries signed a General Cooperation Agreement in the Technical and Scientific domain.

The deal launched foundations to leverage the sectors of staff training and science development.

Angola and Saudi Arabia also maintain cooperation under the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).

Source: Angola Press News Agency (APNA)

Multimedia exam for driving license to come into force by November

National Road Traffic Department (DNVT) said it will launch as of first half of November Multimedia test to ensure the acquisition of driving license in a move believed to reduce the road traffic accidents.

The General Commander of the National Police (PN), Arnaldo Carlos, announced this on Wednesday in Luanda.

The senior official of National Police was speaking during a press conference, after participating in the third ordinary session of the National Council for Roads and Traffic Planning ( CNVOT), chaired by the Vice President of the Republic, Esperança da Costa.

“The procedures for carrying out the online exams are already underway. Next November they will come into force,” he assured after the meeting which analysed the causes of road accidents in the first semester of the current year.

According to Arnaldo Carlos, the introduction of the online exam is one of the many strategies of the CNVOT to be implemented to reduce the number of road accidents, which from January to July totaled 7,283.

During the same period, 1,458 dead and 8,926 injuries were recorded, as well as material damage estimated at more than one billion kwanzas.

To the General Commander of the National Police, speeding and illegal overtaking are among the main causes of these unfortunate incidents.

Still in relation to the first half of the current year, the boss of the PN informed that the main victims of the accidents were pedestrians and passengers, aged between 16 and 44, mostly men

Source: Angola Press News Agency (APNA)

Angola, Brazil with 11 cooperation agreements in pipeline

At least 11 cooperation agreements are expected to be signed as part of the State visit of the President of Brazil Luís Inácio Lula da Silva to Angola, scheduled to start on Friday.

The information was provided Wednesday in Luanda by the Brazilian ambassador to Angola Raúl de Mello Vidal, after a meeting with the National Assembly Speaker Carolina Cerqueira.

According to the diplomat, these are agreements in the areas of agriculture, health, inclusive education, transport, creation of small and medium-sized companies, treatment, processing and transfer of public administration data, as well as reciprocal support for candidacies in international institutions.

The diplomat added that Presidents João Lourenço and Lula da Silva will launch, during the visit of the Brazilian statesman, the Cunene Valley Development Programme, on the occasion of the economic and business forum.

He said the forum will include the participation of 500 businessmen, of whom around 170 Brazilians integrating the Brazilian Presidential entourage.

Raúl de Mello Vidal said that on the table there will also be issues linked to the fields of defence and peace, construction of shipyards, export of vessels and the training of Angolan military personnel to participate in UN missions.

The ambassador said that the first Angolan rapid displacement force was already being prepared in his country to join the UN missions.

He announced Brazil’s intention to build, in the near future, a consulate general in Angola to meet the demand for visas to his country, which has grown by 760 percent in the last three years.

The current situation, he added, recommends strengthening the mission as around 27,000 Brazilians currently living in Angola, the largest community on the African continent, followed by South Africa, with 3,000.

He said that President Lula da Silva’s visit will serve to renew the strategic partnership agreement between the two countries, signed in 2010.

On the occasion, Raúl Vidal informed that the Brazil/Angola Parliamentary friendship group will be resumed.

The Brazilian ambassador was at the National Assembly to discuss details of the extraordinary plenary session, to be held during the President Lula da Silva’s visit to Angola.

In Angola, President Luís Inácio Lula da Silva will be accompanied, among other personalities, by 11 Parliamentarians from his country.

Cooperation between Angola and Brazil began to take shape on June 11, 1980, with the signing of the Economic, Scientific and Technical Cooperation Agreement.

Under this agreement, the two countries developed bilateral cooperation in the areas of health, culture, public administration, professional training, education, environment, sports, statistics and agriculture.

Brazil was the first country in the world to recognize Angola’s independence, proclaimed on November 11, 1975, by then President António Agostinho Neto

Source: Angola Press News Agency (APNA)

Seychelles Supreme Court adjourns illegal firearms and terrorism case to October 3

The Seychelles Supreme Court on Tuesday adjourned the illegal firearms and terrorism case, which started on July 3rd, to October 3rd.

The persons charged in the case are prominent businessman Mukesh Valabjhi and his wife Laura, a lawyer. Also charged are Leslie Benoiton – a senior officer in the Seychelles Defence Forces (SDF), Leopold Payet – a former chief of the Seychelles People’s Defence Forces [the former name of the Seychelles Defence Forces]- and Frank Marie – a retired lieutenant colonel and presidential chief security officer.

The court has set the new dates for the trial in four slots – October 3 to 20, October 21 to November 17, December 4 to 18 December and the final slot January 15 to March 24.

According to the court “the Chief Justice ruled in favour of the Valabhji’s defence team that the trial for illegal possession of firearms and grenades, as well as terrorism, be adjourned.”

The court added that “the Chief Justice agreed to new dates for the trial to continue because James Lewis, the lead attorney for the Valabhjis, said in court on Monday 21 August that his team requires more time to study additional materials provided by the Prosecution.”

The trial was also postponed due to the inability of Frank Marie to attend court. Marie has been admitted to the hospital due to health issues.

The case relates to more than 100 firearms and over 35,000 rounds of ammunition recovered from the Valabjhi’s home at Morne Blanc during a search on November 18.

This came after the couple was arrested in relation to a case of money laundering of a missing $50 million of funds granted to the government of Seychelles by the United Arab Emirates in 2002.

Source: Seychelles News Agency