Africa’s Richest Woman: Isabel Dos Santos in Trouble as Court Orders Seizure of Her Assets

An Angolan court has ordered the seizure of the assets and bank accounts of Africa’s richest woman, the billionaire daughter of ex-President José Eduardo dos Santos.

Africa's Richest Woman:

The court ordered the freezing of Ms Dos Santos’ Angolan bank accounts and the seizure of her stake in local companies, including telecoms giant Unitel and bank Fomento de Angola (BFA), the state-owned news agency reported.

The seizure from all indication appears to be part of an anti-corruption drive by the current administration of President Joao Lourenço.

The current government is seeking to recover $1bn (£760m) it says is owed by Isabel dos Santos and her associates.

Often described as Africa’s richest woman and the second richest black woman in the world, Ms Dos Santos is estimated by Forbes magazine to have a fortune of $2.2bn.

Isabel runs a huge business empire with stakes in companies in Angola and far away Portugal, where she has shares in cable television firm Nos SGPS.

Her brother, José Filomeno dos Santos, is currently on trial in Angola on charges of corruption.

The prosecution alleges that José Filomeno dos Santos and his co-accused helped spirit $500m out of the country during his time as head of Angola’s Sovereign Wealth Fund.

José Eduardo Dos Santos

José Eduardo dos Santos was president from 1979 until he resigned in 2017 to be replaced by President Joao Lourenco, who is from the same governing party, the MPLA.

The fortunes of the family of the former president, who had allowed corruption to flourish during his rule, changed after he stepped down.

After coming to power, Mr Lourenço abruptly turned against the Dos Santos clan, promising a major crackdown on corruption.Since then, billions of dollars in stolen assets have been recovered from abroad.

Uzonna Anele
Uzonna Anele
Anele is a web developer and a Pan-Africanist who believes bad leadership is the only thing keeping Africa from taking its rightful place in the modern world.


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