Sunday, 16 December 2012

Angola - National Flag

The flag of Angola was officially hoisted at independence on 11 November 1975. The National Flag consists of two colours in horizontal bands. The upper band shall be bright red and the lower one black. In the middle of the flag is a yellow star, part of a cog wheel and a machete. The red represents the blood shed by Angolans during colonial oppression, the national liberation struggle and the defence of the country. The black the African continent. The a cog wheel, symbolises the workers and industrial production. The a machete symbolising the peasants, agricultural production and the armed struggle. The star, symbolising international solidarity and progress. The yellow of the symbols represents the country's wealth. The symbol is clearly inspired by hammer and sickle.
An alternate representation states that yellow is to represent mineral wealth, and red and black are said to stand for 'Freedom or Death'.

Like in some other African countries this flag is a modification of the ruling party's flag. The guerrilla movement and later governing party, the Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA), used the same design with a golden star in the centre. Red stood for socialism and black for Africa. The star was modelled after the red star of the Soviet Union, which sponsored the MPLA.

The Angola flag has remained controversial. Some see it as an excessively political symbol, pointing out the similarity with the MPLA's party flag. It has also been criticized for representing memories of Angola's bloody and violent past, instead of hope for the future.