João Lourenço

João Lourenço

João Lourenço
Joao Lourenco May 2017.jpg
 This Article is Answer to Who is Joao Lourenco?
3rd President of Angola
Assumed office
26 September 2017
Vice President Bornito de Sousa
Preceded by José Eduardo dos Santos
Minister of National Defense
In office
22 April 2014 – 26 September 2017
President José Eduardo dos Santos
Preceded by Cândido Pereira dos Santos
Succeeded by Salviano de Jesus Sequeira
 angolan president angola
Personal details
Born (1954-03-05) 5 March 1954 (age 63)
Lobito, Angola
Political party MPLA
Spouse(s) Ana Afonso Dias
Children 6
Alma mater Industrial Institute of Luanda
Lenin Superior Academy
Nickname(s) JLo

João Manuel Gonçalves Lourenço  is an Angolan politician and current President of Angola since 26 September 2017. Previously he was Minister of Defense from 2014 to 2017. Since 2016, he is the Vice-President of the Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA), the ruling party. He was the party’s Secretary-General from 1998 to 2003.

João Lourenço was designated in December 2016 to occupy the party’s number 1 position in the August 2017 legislative election. In terms of the 2010 constitution, “the individual heading the national list of the political party or coalition of political parties which receives the most votes in general elections… shall be elected President of the Republic and Head of the Executive”(Article 109). As the MPLA won a majority of 150 seats, Lourenço automatically became President of Angola, succeeding José Eduardo dos Santos, in power for 38 years. Lourenço was officially sworn into office on 26 September 2017.

Early life of João Lourenço

João Lourenço has born in 1954, Lourenço grew up in a politically engaged family of ten children. His father, Sequeira João Lourenço (1923-1999), a native of Malanje, was a nurse and nationalist, who served three years of imprisonment for illegal political activity. His mother, Josefa Gonçalves Cipriano Lourenço (1928-1998), a seamstress, was a native of Namibe. He received primary and secondary education in Bié Province and Luanda.

Education and military career

Lourenço studied at the Industrial Institute of Luanda and later participated in the liberation struggle in Ponta Negra, in August 1974, where he was part of the first group of MPLA soldiers to enter Angolan territory via Miconge, towards the city of Cabinda after the fall of the Portuguese colonial regime.

João Lourenço
President Jacob Zuma who is SADC Chairperson, President of the Republic of Zambia Edgar Lungu and the Chairperson of the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Troika President Joao Lourenco confer at the SADC Troika Plus SADC Chairperson Summit held in Luanda, Angola 2017

He began his military career fighting against the Portuguese in the Angolan War of Independence and fought as a member of the MPLA in the Angolan Civil War. Lourenço conducted his training in artillery and then became a political officer in the MPLA. In 1978, Lourenço traveled to the Soviet Union and studied at the Lenin Higher Academy, where he further his military training and completed a master’s degree in Historical Sciences. He later returned to Angola in 1982. Now an artillery general, Lourenço turned towards politics and in 1984 was appointed as Governor of Moxico Province.

Political career

Lourenço’s early politics were mainly confined within the MPLA as an officer responsible for keeping guerrilla soldiers’ morale high. Following his appointment as Governor of Moxico Province in 1984, he continued to rise through the ranks of the ruling party. He also served as the provincial commissioner of Moxico Province for the MPLA, president of the Regional Military Council of the 3rd Military Political Region, First Secretary of MPLA and Provincial Commissioner of Benguela Province. He was the MPLA’s Secretary for Information from 1992 to 1997 and President of the MPLA Parliamentary Group in the National Assembly from 1993 to 1998.

João Lourenço, the Angolan Minister of Defense, lays a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, in Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington
João Lourenço, the Angolan Minister of Defense, lays a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, in Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington

At a party congress, he was elected as Secretary-General of the MPLA on 12 December 1998. His election was said to be linked to the favor of President Jose Eduardo dos Santos and it was thought that Lourenço could potentially succeed the long-ruling dos Santos at some point. However, after dos Santos said in 2001 that he would not seek re-election as President, Lourenço openly expressed an interest in becoming the MPLA’s presidential candidate and thereby damaged his standing with dos Santos, who apparently had no real intention of leaving office. Juilão Mateus Paulo succeeded him as MPLA Secretary-General at a December 2003 party congress.

oão Manuel Gonçalves Lourenço
President Jacob Zuma of the Republic of South Africa and President João Manuel Gonçalves Lourenço of the Republic of Angola held their bilateral meeting this evening after inauguration ceremony that was held at Memorial Antonio Agostinho Neto in Launda, Republic of Angola.South Africa and the Republic of Angola share a common history of the struggle against Apartheid, and strong multi-faceted bilateral ties exist between the two countries. This is not only evidenced through the fraternal political relationship, but also through the growing socio-economic and trade and investment relationship between the two countries. Angola is one of South Africa’s largest trading partners on the continent of Africa with numerous South African companies involved in a variety of sectors in Angola including in construction, mining, housing, retail, food and beverages, hotels and leisure, banking and medical services.26/09/2017

Lourenço was First Vice-President of the National Assembly from 2003 to 2014. He was appointed as Minister of Defense in April 2014, and he was designated as Vice-President of the MPLA in August 2016.

In December 2016 the MPLA designated Lourenço as the party’s top candidate in the 2017 legislative election.

Personal life

He is married to Ana Afonso Dias Lourenço, a Member of Parliament of the MPLA and former Minister of Planning, who held a position at the World Bank in Washington until October 2016. They have six children.

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