On January 13, activist Tanaice Neutro was arrested in connection to videos he recorded where he called the president a ‘clown’ and the authorities ‘ignorant’. He was tried in October 2022 and handed a suspended sentence of 15 months for causing outrage against state symbols. The judge, however, ordered his immediate release on health grounds.
It has been six months since the ruling, but he remains in prison. Tanaice Neutro is in severe physical and mental pain and the prison authorities have not provided the necessary medical care he requires.
The Angolan authorities must release him immediately and unconditionally.
Download a PDF of UA 34/23 below:
What you can do to help:
Write to the Minister of Justice and Human Rights urging him to:
- Immediately release Tanaice Neutro, as ordered by the judge.
- Ensure that his conviction is quashed as it stems solely from the exercise of his right to freedom of expression.
- Pending his release, he must be urgently granted access to adequate healthcare, including, if necessary, outside prison.
Minister of Justice and Human Rights
Marcy Cláudio Lopes
Casarão da Justiça, Rua 17 de Setembro
Gombota, Luanda, LU, Angola
Salutation: Dear Minister Marcy Cláudio Lopes,
• Director of Human rights at Ministry of Justice- Ivan Levita. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
• The Secretary of State for Human Rights and Citizenship, Secretary Ana Celeste Cardoso Januário.
President of Angola, Mr. João Lourenço
c/c the Secretary-General of the President, Ms. Sónia Veigas
Address: Secretário-Geral do Presidente da República
Órgãos Auxiliares do Presidente da República
Palácio Presidencial, Rua 17 de Setembro
Cidade Alta – Luanda, Angola
Embassy of the Republic of Angola
2108 16th Street, NW
Washington, D.C., DC 20009
United States of America
Tel: (202) 785-1156/7/8 Fax: (202) 822-9049
You can download a Social Media Guidance below:
Tanaice Neutro, 34, is an activist and artist who uses kuduro, a type of Angolan music, to express his views about social issues such as poverty, inequality, corruption and bad governance. One of his songs is called “protest”, where he describes the challenges people in Angola are facing and the reasons behind the growing number of young people protesting.
Tanaice Neutro was diagnosed with hemorrhoids in 2020. In 2021, he travelled to Namibia to see a specialist who told him surgery was required. He was due to go back to Namibia for the surgery when he was arrested. He is in extreme pain due to the untreated hemorrhoids, has experienced severe fever and has been unable to release his bowels on several occasions due to the pain. He was transferred to the prison hospital for his headaches, but the prison lacks the necessary facilities to carry out the surgery he requires.
It remains unclear why Tanaice Neutro has not been released as ordered by the court in October 2022. The continued detention despite a court order mandating his release, in addition to the fact that the charges stem solely from the peaceful exercise of his right to freedom of expression, render his detention arbitrary.
Amnesty International is concerned with the growing number of activists and human rights defenders being targeted by Angolan authorities for freely expressing their opinions, including online, which is a clear violation of their right to freedom of expression.