- Angola's Constitutional Court has cleared 10 political parties and four alliances to contest parliamentary elections scheduled for September 5, Angola press reported today.
The court's approval followed contestant's submission of files including signatures of 14,000 voters between 27 June and 7 July, to contest the first national elections since a 27-year civil war ended in 2002 and the first legislative elections since 1992.
Among those given a go ahead to field candidates in 220 constituencies in oil-rich southern African nation, include former rebel movement, UNITA, which is now official opposition in parliament, as well as Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA) party of veteran President Jose Eduardo dos Santos.
While most of the country's 98 registered political parties did not submit applications, 14 parties were barred from taking part in elections due to irregularities in their application documents.
Earlier this month, minority opposition Frente para a Democracia (FpD), cried foul of intimidation and violence against their supporters by country's ruling party youth league.
FpD appealed to international community and regional bodies to call down on ruling party to cease on acts of intimidation and violence against opposition parties, citing an incidence of a party official in Moxico province who was ambushed by unidentified men, believed to be members of the special agency.
The party further claimed incidents of physical aggression on its members as well as removal of documents allegedly by both ruling party youth cadres and state secret agency.
Allegations by FpD came despite reassurance by newly appointed Launda police chief, Mr Joaquim Vieira Ribeiro, who guaranteed that efforts are being made for the stability of citizen.
The last legislative elections were held 16 years ago during a lull in the fighting between UNITA and government forces, but second round was called off after the late UNITA leader Jonas Savimbi alleged there had been widespread vote rigging.
While the September polls will choose representatives for the Luanda parliament, President dos Santos who has been in power since 1979 is yet to confirm whether he will stand in presidential polls expected in 2009.
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