UNITA, the Angolan opposition, on Thursday called on taxi drivers and motorcycle taxi drivers unhappy with the increase in gasoline prices to refrain from violence and called for a parliamentary investigation into the clashes in Huambo that caused at least five deaths.
The position of the parliamentary group of the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola on the events that occurred in the cities of Huambo and Lubango, on June 5 and 6, was expressed by the group’s leader, Liberty Chiaka, in Luanda.
The parliamentary leader criticized the “timely” withdrawal of gasoline subsidies —a measure announced on June 1 to take effect less than 24 hours later— considering that the decision is not in the public interest and that it was not rational, questioning the government criteria.
UNITA considers that the government “has been reacting badly and communicating worse”, accusing it of being “kidnapped by the interests of duly installed groups and without human sensitivity”.
The rise in the price of gasoline (from 160 to 300 kwanzas) caused the revolt of taxi drivers and motorcycle taxi drivers in several provinces, since, despite being covered by exemptions, the vast majority still do not have the cards that allow them to travel . use of benefit.
In Huambo, at least five people died, according to the police (local sources report eight deaths) and dozens were injured or detained.
Also in Lubango (Huila), the taxi drivers decided to paralyze the activity, a bus having been set on fire and more than 50 people arrested.
UNITA will propose to the Plenary of the National Assembly, on June 22, “urgently”, the constitution of a Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry (CPI) to investigate the circumstances of the “serious incidents” in Huambo and Lubango.
“The National Assembly must determine, regardless of the police investigation, who issued the order to shoot and kill the citizens, that the State must protect and truthfully determine the extent and depth of the serious events, with deaths and destruction of property .
After the police and ICC investigation, the authorities of the related State must draw political consequences”, defends the largest Angolan opposition party.
For UNITA, “Angolans cannot die due to government incapacity, human insensitivity and group interests”, associating “lack of dialogue and consideration” to situations of constant violations of the Constitution and the law.
Finally, the UNITA Parliamentary Group calls on the public, particularly taxi drivers and motorcycle taxi drivers, to refrain from violence: “violence generates violence and can legitimize those who are wrong, those who do not know how to govern ”, concludes the largest Angolan opposition party.