1977 Coup in Angola
All Conflicts Main Page

The 1977 coup attempt in Angola was a direct result of the struggle between the factions within the MPLA. The faction of candidates for leadership in the party was led by the Ministry of Internal Affairs Nito Alves and Jose Van Dunem, both of them are members of the Central Committee and are classified as “ultra-left” by their political views. Both were expelled from the party in the spring of 1977, reproaching them that they had interrupted food supplies in order to arouse the discontent of the people, and a month later, on May 25, 1977, an attempted coup d'etat took place.

It was assumed that after victory Nito Alves would become president, Van Dunem will be prime minister. Participants in the event took hostage and killed a number of officials. The units loyal to them occupied the radio station and released Alves' supporters from prison; Neto in response mobilized the tank units of the presidential guard, which he could not have done without the help of the Cubans, who occupied officer posts in the units and lived in the same barracks. At the selected radio station, the Cuban again read out the appeal to the nation, and the Cubans patrolled the streets after the event. Therefore, it is alleged that “Cuban tanks prevented the coup”, although after the event, the Cuban ambassador to Luanda was recalled from the country and replaced, which seems to indicate the displeasure of the Cuban leadership of his actions.

Nito Alves, Van Dune, and their associates, considered the leaders of the conspiracy, were executed without trial, although they managed to hold out "in the field" for a long time - Alves was arrested in his native village only on July 7. Following this, Neto had to clean the apparatus of Alves' appointees - the so-called "nitists", disperse demonstrations and hold reprisals against the opposition, in total, according to estimates, up to 30 thousand people suffered, the exact number was not established. MPLA only repented much later, in 1992, that there were regrettable excesses, but the promised commission of inquiry, which was about to be created at the same time, had to be curtailed due to the start of a new war.  


© Conflictologist, 2006- ...
All questions you must address with the site owner

Locations of visitors to this page
All Conflicts Main Page