We publish an unofficial translation of an article by AND comrades from Brazil on current struggles in Angola.

Three workers from the Chinese construction company China Ghezouba Group Company Limited (CGGC) were killed by the Angolan National Police (PNA) on 26 May during a protest for better working conditions and wage increases in Kwanza Norte province.

The workers, involved in the construction of the Caculo Cabaça dam, denounced that they have been fighting for years for several rights denied to them by the Chinese monopolies, such as wage adjustment, health insurance, annual leave, bi-monthly time off, risk, isolation and transport allowances, as well as improvements in working conditions, such as decent food, better housing and recreational spaces.

In 2019, Caculo Cabaça workers made several of these demands to the large Chinese company, but none were met. In April this year, the workers brought their activities to a halt, but again they were ignored by the big tycoons.

On 25 May, in anger over their working conditions, they started a militant protest, destroying company buildings and facilities such as offices, eight cars and electricity generators. The protests continued on 26 May when the Angolan National Police used firearms at close range against the workers. As a result of the brutal repression, three people were killed and a still unknown number of workers were injured. "We are only fighting for improvements, for basic conditions. The police received us within 200 metres, we did not even have a direct confrontation with the police, as soon as I saw that the shots were coming from close range. Then I saw that our colleague was dead, four others were shot in the legs and one in the back," one worker told media monopoly Rádio Nacional de Angola (RNA). Another worker, who wished to remain anonymous, stressed the justification of the uprising in an interview with VOA Portuguese: "The workers are really unhappy, the Chinese never obeyed the law. According to them, they sent the notebook (demands) a long time ago but never did anything, and now it has come to this.

Semi-colonialism in Angola

Caculo Cabaça's project reflects and deepens the situation of semi-coloniality in Angola. The project, developed by the Angolan Ministry of Energy and Water, is financed by loans worth billions from Chinese social imperialism. Construction of the power plant, which began in 2017, is being led by CGGC, a company belonging to the Chinese state conglomerate China Energy Engineering Corporation and financed with Chinese financial capital through the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, the Bank of China, China Construction Bank, China Minsheng Bank and Ping An Bank, which is responsible for a $4.1 billion loan to the old Angolan state.

Once construction is completed, CGGC will act as the plant's concessionaire and operator for a period of four years. Only then can the Angolan state-owned Empresa Pública de Produção de Eletricidade (PRODEL-EP) take over the operation of the hydropower plant.

This whole process reflects the conditions of bureaucratic capitalism prevailing in Angola, a type of capitalism introduced by foreign finance capital into colonial and semi-colonial countries and based on semi-feudal economic relations. In the specific case of Chinese social imperialism in Angola, already denounced by the AND, oppression and exploitation take place mainly through the participation of Chinese companies and banks in construction projects of the old Angolan state (Caculo Cabaça case) or through the interaction of Chinese monopolies with companies of big Angolan businessmen.

Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)