Missombo Jail

Missombo Jail

Before the end of 2017, the building where the Missombo colonial repression chain operated, in Cuando Cubango, will be transformed into a historical-cultural museum with an international dimension, announced the provincial director of Culture, Carla Cativa.
Cativa stressed that despite the economic situation that the country is currently experiencing, works to rebuild the Missombo chain are soon awarded, thus preserving its architectural structure, so that future generations can understand how their ancestors were tortured by Portuguese colonialists. With an area of ​​239 square meters, the building also includes the construction of an arts and crafts school, medical posts, kiosks, restaurants, parking lots, antheatre, inn and the creation of tourist areas. “The old Missombo jail, formerly intended for political prisoners, reveals the intransigence and heroism of the Angolan people and in particular Cuando Cubango. Along this path, the infrastructure must be conserved so that it can serve as a living example for generations to come ”, he defended.
The colonial repression camp of Missombo describes the memories of suffering experienced by the valiant guerrillas of the colonial resistance struggle, with emphasis on some political prisoners of Process 50, namely Imperial Francisco Santana, Salvador Sebastião,
The works of the Missombo Paiva prison establishment Domingos da Silva, Manuel Pedro Pacavira, Virgílio Francisco Sotto Mayor, Afonso Dias da Silva, David Massango Machado (Minerva), Pedro José Van-Dúnem and others who showed their courage in favor national independence, achieved on November 11, 1975.
The Missombo jail is located 16 kilometers from the city of Menongue. It functioned as a field of colonial repression. It was built by the Portuguese government in 1961, at the time with chopped wood and barbed wire. There, 500 prisoners from northern Angola were held captive. Yesterday, during a guided visit to the old Missombo jail, João Mbuenga, a former MPLA guerrilla, recalled the moments of bitterness that the nationalists, some of whom from the Process of 50, lived there. Mbuenga praised the courage of men who, without weapons, took simple agricultural instruments and fought against Portuguese colonialism. Highlighted in zone D, Dona Ginga division, arrived at the time by commander N'Dinga Wa N’Dinga, João Mbuenga stressed that he was one of the men who fought to free political prisoners who in the 60s were imprisoned in the Missombo jails.
“It was difficult to escape from the jail, because there was a garrison on all sides, and the prisoner who tried to escape was killed immediately, while those who resisted do not enjoy good health, due to the mistreatment and forced labor they were under. subjects ”, he lamented.

Through executive decree 62/18, of April 20, the Ministry of Culture approved the classification as "National Historical-Cultural Heritage" of the "Colonial Repression Chain of Missombo", located in the municipality of Menongue, province of Cuando Cubango, in the southern Angola.
"It represents one of the most important places in the history of our country, linked to the struggle for liberation and national interdependence", emphasizes the declaration, signed by the Minister of Culture, Carolina Cerqueira.
Built between 1961 and 1962, that jail was able to accommodate 800 prisoners, including several Angolan nationalists who participated in actions against the Portuguese colonial regime.

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