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Vol 56 No 4

Published 20th February 2015

Equatorial Guinea

Obiang’s own goal fest

Hosting the Africa Cup of Nations won some prestige for the regime but could not paper over the cracks

From the glass-fronted VIP section of the main stand, President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo had a perfect view as crowd violence in the Nuevo Estadio de Malabo spiralled out of control on 5 February. No pleas over the public address system that they were shaming their country could quell the rowdy crowd, which seemed unable to accept that Equatorial Guinea was losing badly, and fairly, to Ghana in that semi-final. If the regime drew some kudos from hosting the Africa Cup of Nations, it also exposed to wider view the volatility and frustration of local people (AC Vol 56 No 3). A police helicopter flew dangerously low over rioting stands, just one manifestation of the lack of preparedness of the security apparatus for AfCON 2015.

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