Isabel dos Santos is the former president of Angola’s eldest daughter, Jose Eduardo dos Santos. Born on 1 April 1943, Isabel is the richest woman in Africa. Her net worth approximation is above US$ two billion. During his father’s time as the president, that she was made the head of Sonangol in June 2016. This is state oil firm. However, this did not last long, after the resignation of her father, in 2017, the new president sacked her.
The research showed that it’s during the time the father was the president that she acquired a lot of wealth. She ended up having stakes in companies in Angola, including telecom firms and banks. She also owns shares of Portuguese companies, cable TV firm NOS SGPS. In an interview with Forbes, her spokesperson said,” she is an independent businesswoman and a private investor representing solely her interests.” However, in December 2019, a court in Angola issued an order of freezing all her stakes, which have in the Angolan companies. Part of the case was about the funds that she owns the oil firm she was heading.
Isabel eyes for the presidency
Despite the billionaire’s huge financial scandal, she has hinted that she may go for the topmost Angolan job. In an interview with BBC News, MS Isabel pointed out four times that she would learn for the presidency. In the scandal, the prosecutors are trying to get $1 billion, which her father and her close associates alleged to owe the state. However, she defends herself, denying any wrongdoings.
In an interview in London, she repeatedly stressed that her life would be in danger if she attempts to return to Angola. She refused to rule out her presidency candida her. Isabel claimed to have a sense of patriotism, which was strong as well as the duty to her country as a citizen. She said,
“To lead is to serve, so I will do whatever my life takes me.”
Later in a separate interview with a television channel in Portugal complimented that it is possible and that she is thinking of running for the presidency in 2022. This, however, marks change for a woman who was well known as an entrepreneur with no interest in politics.
Ms. Dos Santos has criticized President Lourenco, who took over after her father repeatedly. Despite being from the same party, she says that the current president seems to target dos Santos family more in his war against corruption. She further cites poor leadership from the president and hence a stagnant economy, unemployment, and strikes.
Isabel dos Santos scandal
A court in Luanda, the capital city of Angola, ordered that the banks of her vast business empire should be freeze. This is due to the allegation raised against and the Dos family in which the prosecutors say that they robbed the country $2billion and more.
“These are false allegations, and this is part of plan and attack by the current government that is completely politically motivated,”
Isabel goes ahead and says that the current president is using her as a scapegoat, accusing the attorney general of refusing her lawyers to have a look at the evidence placed against her.
On the other hand, his half-brother Jose Filomena is also in court corridas o charges of corruption. He and his co-accused alleged to have facilitated $500 million worth of spirit out of Angola. This happened while he was the head of the Angolan sovereign wealth fund. They have, however, have no doubt that they are guilty
Will she win the election?
The biggest question that many are asking themselves is if Isabel Dos Santos can win. Can she outdo his father’s predecessor? Some observers are playing down very quickly the dynasty of Dos Santos with Isabel. An Oxford professor who is also an expert in African politics says that Isabel’s constituency inside the party is not strong hence not favoring her. He further explains that the party is currently owned by the current president. Therefore, the party is behind him.
“Dos Santos and Isabel remain unpopular in the country and the party alike. I am not writing her off entirely, but these ongoing revelations genuinely weaken her, and her international standing is deteriorating.”
She insists that those commercial battles she has, cannot be solved by political manoeuvres. She adds that she will first require a change in the law of Angola. This is because she is ineligible to vie since her mother is from Russia.
However, those who have been watching her career in business, publicly criticizing the current leadership agrees that it’s an obstacle that is unlikely to show insurmountable.