Africa’s richest woman has been accused of corruption and exploiting her own country’s natural resources, after thousands of documents detailing her business interests were leaked to the media.
Isabel dos Santos, who resides in the UK and whose father was the president of Angola, faces allegations of exploiting family connections to secure deals on land, oil and diamonds.
According to the documents, seen by BBC Panorama and the Guardian, she and her husband were allowed to buy up valuable state assets and siphon hundreds of millions of dollars out of Angola.
Ms dos Santos, whose fortune is estimated at £2bn, says these claims are entirely false and that she is the victim of a witch-hunt led by the Angolan government.
We’re a bit past mere accusations, aren’t we?
Well, I suppose it is possible that the person best suited – in a purely business and open market sense – to being awarded the mobile telephone monopoly was the President’s daughter. Not quite how I’d bet but it is possible.
Ahhh, my mistake, not the monopoly:
Later, when it briefly looked like the civil war was over, she returned to Angola, where she started a transport business. Dealing with communications for trucks led her to mobile phone technology, then in its infancy. This proved fortuitous, and she rejects absolutely any suggestion that being the eldest daughter of the president helped when a consortium she was part of won a public tender for a licence – only the second in Angola – for mobile telecommunications towards the end of the 1990s. Unitel is now the country’s biggest mobile phone provider.
Entirely meritorious, obviously.