Rafael Marques

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Rafael Marques de Morais (Luanda, Angola August 31, 1971) is a journalist and human rights activist whose reports on the diamond industry and government corruption have earned him international acclaim. He currently runs the anti-corruption watchdog Maka Angola (www.makaangola.com).

The Lipstick of the Dictatorship

Marques wrote "The Lipstick of the Dictatorship," an article criticizing President José Eduardo dos Santos, on July 3, 1999. The National Criminal Investigation Division (DNIC) questioned him on October 13 for several hours before releasing him. Later that day Morais gave an interview with Radio Ecclésia and repeated his criticism of the dos Santos government. Twenty armed members of the Rapid Intervention Police arrested him along with Aguiar dos Santos, the publisher of Agora, and Antonio José Freitas, Agora staff reporter, on charges of defamation on October 16, 1999. Marques said dos Santos bore responsibility for the "destruction of the country... for the promotion of incompetence, embezzlement and corruption as political and social values." Marques also referred to dos Santos as a "dictator." A Luanda court found Freitas innocent but found Aguiar and Marques guilty on March 31, 2000. The court sentenced Aguiar to two months in prison and a $6,000 fine. Marques, found guilty of violating articles 43, 44, 45 and 46 of...
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