Lisbon – Violent fighting in Chissanzi in the Massabi region between the Angolan Armed Forces (FAA) and the Cabinda State Liberation Front (FLEC-FAC) resulted in 12 deaths, including 6 civilians, 4 Angolan soldiers and 2 FLEC-FAC fighters, the independence movement announced.
According to Brigadier General and spokesman for the FAC General Staff, António Rosário, the fighting took place as the independentists began the commemorations of the 4th anniversary of the death of Nzita Tiago, charismatic leader of FLEC-FAC.
António Rosário also pointed out that the FAA went on the offensive when FLEC-FAC announced a ceasefire for health reasons due to the Covid-19 pandemic, in fulfillment of the appeal launched by the Secretary-General of the United Nations, António Guterres.
Shortly before the FAA attack, FLEC-FAC had opened military ceremonies in memory of Nzita Tiago (see video) with the organization’s anthem. At the time Commander Geraldo Buela Dragão argued that the date of June 3 should “be a reflection date” for the cabindas. He also recalled that Nzita Tiago had started the political struggle with “his brother-in-law Patrice Lumumba”, and summed up the process that led to the creation of FLEC.
“Nzita Tiago is a model and a school for all of us” and “symbolizes the struggle of the Cabindan people for the right to self-determination” as well as “always favored dialogue” for the resolution of the conflict, said Geraldo Buela Dragão on the same occasion. The FLEC-FAC Commander also called for unity among the cabins, stressing that “there are people who want to help” the independent organization.
Contacted by e-Global, Emmanuel Nzita, president of FLEC-FAC, criticized the “warrior and bloodthirsty coldness of the FAA”, however, he assures that the independence movement “will not give in to the provocations of angolan war chiefs”, and will maintain the ceasefire thus respecting the call launched by António Guterres, still in force. Emmanuel Nzita added that he “remains willing to engage in dialogue” and that he continues to wait for a “sign of goodwill from Luanda.”
Nzita Henriques Tiago
Nzita Henriques Tiago, president and co-founder of the Cabinda Enclave Liberation Front / Cabinda Armed Forces (FLEC/FAC), died on June 3, 2016 in Draveil in the Paris region, France.
Nzita Tiago was born on 14 July 1927 in Mboma Lubinda in Cabinda. After a long period of political activity in Zaire (present-day Democratic Republic of congo) together with Patrice Lumumba, he participated in 1963 in the creation of FLEC in Ponta Negra, Republic of congo.
On the eve of Angola’s independence, seeing that Cabinda would not enter the framework of Portuguese decolonization, Nzita Tiago starts a guerrilla war against Angolan forces in Cabinda, supported by Cuban troops.
A charismatic figure in cabindan resistance, Nzita Tiago had become an unavoidable figure in any process about Cabinda’s political fate.