14 January 2013

Southern Africa: Protests Predicted in Angola and Malawi

Protests in the week ahead are likely in Angola over veterans' pensions and in Malawi over economic reforms.

Angola: Veterans' protests in Luanda in coming weeks

On January 9, war veterans protesting against non-payment of their stipends vowed to continue until their demands were met. Between January 2 and 9, police dispersed around 200 army veterans protesting for the payment of overdue pensions in central Luanda, using police dogs and horse-mounted police, as well as the Rapid Intervention and Military Police. The veterans are unlikely to be deterred and the number of protesters is likely to increase gradually as other groups, including youth groups and opposition politicians, join in solidarity.

Protests are likely to be around the Caixa Social in the Maculusso neighbourhood and most likely in front of the National Assembly, the Ministry of Veteran Affairs on Largo dos Ministérios and at the Independence Square (1 de Maio).

Malawi: Nationwide demonstrations called for against economic reforms

The Consumer Association of Malawi (CAMA) called for nationwide public protests on January 17 against the implementation of economic reforms by President Joyce Banda's government.

Demonstrations are likely to attract tens of thousands of people in the central business district of major cities, in particular Lilongwe and Blantyre. The Civil Servants Trade Union said that its members would participate in the public demonstrations to protest against a reduction of wages in real terms.

The police are likely to use teargas and batons to disperse demonstrations, posing elevated risks of injury to bystanders, disruption of business operations and property damage as a result of roadblocks, looting and vandalism.

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