2011 São Toméan presidential election
A presidential election was held in São Tomé and Príncipe in 2011, the first round beginning on 17 July 2011 with a run-off held on 7 August 2011. Incumbent President Fradique de Menezes has served the maximum two terms and could not constitutionally seek a third term; the final result saw former president Manuel Pinto da Costa, aged 74, elected in a narrow victory against Speaker of Parliament Evaristo Carvalho. The first round was contested by 120 candidates; the candidate from President de Menezes' party, Force for Change Democratic Movement–Liberal Party, was Delfim Neves, who jointly represented the MDFM–PL and his own Democratic Convergence Party. Pinto da Costa, who ran independently, won the most votes but failed to receive the majority required to claim an outright victory. Carvalho, of the ruling party Independent Democratic Action, a former prime minister and the incumbent Speaker of the National Assembly, placed second. A run-off to be contested between Pinto da Costa and Carvalho was announced on the same day.
Pinto da Costa received the backing of the majority of eliminated candidates, he was expected to win comfortably. Pinto da Costa won the runoff, held 7 August, by five percentage points, he is scheduled to remain as president for a term of five years. Manuel Pinto da Costa served as São Tomé and Príncipe's first president from independence in 1975, he governed the islands as a one-party socialist state under the Movement for the Liberation of São Tomé and Príncipe. In 1991, the legalisation of opposition political parties led to the country's first election under a democratic system. Pinto da Costa was not a candidate in that election and instead announced he would retire from politics; the MLSTP did not present an alternative candidate and Miguel Trovoada was elected unopposed. Despite his previous declaration, Pinto da Costa returned to participate in the presidential elections of 1996, but was narrowly defeated by Trovoada. In 2001, he ran against incumbent president Fradique de Menezes, was again unsuccessful.
Pinto da Costa resigned from the MLSTP in 2005. The party is led by Aurélio Martins, who placed sixth in the first round vote count. Other major candidates included former prime minister Maria das Neves and former defence minister Elsa Pinto, both independents. Pinto da Costa's main rival, represented the ADI, which won the parliamentary elections in August 2010 and is the ruling party of incumbent Prime Minister Patrice Trovoada. A total of 92,639 citizens were registered to vote. In the first round, the national electoral commission, headed by Victor Correia, recorded a turnout of 68%. Of the 120 candidates, Da Costa and Carvalho won the most votes, but neither candidate received enough support to claim a majority. Delfim Neves and Maria das Neves both won substantial vote counts, but only the first two placeholders went through to the run-off. After the results were confirmed, most of the eliminated candidates, including Delfim Neves, Maria das Neves and Aurélio Martins, endorsed da Costa's bid for the run-off.
Missions from the African Union, Community of Portuguese Language Countries and the Economic Community of Central African States sent observers to monitor the election, declared free and fair. The only major controversy observed was a boycott by around 30,000 from five small villages on São Tomé's northern shore, in protest over grievances with living conditions that had not been addressed; the polls were re-opened in these villages on 20 July. Several analysts have raised concerns that Pinto da Costa's victory may trigger a return to the authoritarian rule seen during his previous period in power. Pinto da Costa's campaign website
São Tomé and Príncipe
São Tomé and Príncipe the Democratic Republic of São Tomé and Príncipe, is an island country in the Gulf of Guinea, off the western equatorial coast of Central Africa. It consists of two archipelagos around the two main islands of São Tomé and Príncipe, about 140 kilometres apart and about 250 and 225 kilometres off the northwestern coast of Gabon, respectively; the islands were uninhabited until their discovery by Portuguese explorers in the 15th century. Colonised and settled by the Portuguese throughout the 16th century, they collectively served as a vital commercial and trade center for the Atlantic slave trade; the rich volcanic soil and close proximity to the Equator made São Tomé and Príncipe ideal for sugar cultivation, followed by cash crops such as coffee and cocoa. Cycles of social unrest and economic instability throughout the 19th and 20th centuries culminated in peaceful independence in 1975. São Tomé and Príncipe has since remained one of Africa's most democratic countries. With a population of 199,910, São Tomé and Príncipe is the second-smallest African sovereign state after Seychelles, as well as the smallest Portuguese-speaking country.
Its people are predominantly with most practising Roman Catholicism. The legacy of Portuguese rule is visible in the country's culture and music, which fuse European and African influences. São Tomé and Príncipe is a founding member state of the Community of Portuguese Language Countries; the islands of São Tomé and Príncipe were uninhabited when the Portuguese arrived sometime around 1470. The islands were discovered by João de Pêro Escobar. Portuguese navigators explored the islands and decided that they would be good locations for bases to trade with the mainland; the dates of discovery are sometimes given as 21 December 1471, for São Tomé. Príncipe was named Santo Antão, changing its name in 1502 to Ilha do Príncipe, in reference to the Prince of Portugal to whom duties on the island's sugar crop were paid; the first successful settlement of São Tomé was established in 1493 by Álvaro Caminha, who received the land as a grant from the crown. Príncipe was settled in 1500 under a similar arrangement.
Attracting settlers proved difficult and most of the earliest inhabitants were "undesirables" sent from Portugal Jews. In time these settlers found the volcanic soil of the region suitable for agriculture the growing of sugar. By 1515, São Tomé and Príncipe had become slave depots for the coastal slave trade centered at Elmina; the cultivation of sugar was a labour-intensive process and the Portuguese began to enslave large numbers of Africans from the mainland. By the mid-16th century the Portuguese settlers had turned the islands into Africa's foremost exporter of sugar. São Tomé and Príncipe were taken over and administered by the Portuguese crown in 1522 and 1573, respectively. However, competition from sugar-producing colonies in the Western Hemisphere began to hurt the islands; the large enslaved population proved difficult to control, with Portugal unable to invest many resources in the effort. Sugar cultivation thus declined over the next 100 years, by the mid-17th century, the economy of São Tomé had changed.
It was now a transit point for ships engaged in the slave trade between the West and continental Africa. In the early 19th century, two new cash crops and cocoa, were introduced; the rich volcanic soils proved well suited to the new cash crop industry, soon extensive plantations, owned by Portuguese companies or absentee landlords, occupied all of the good farmland. By 1908, São Tomé had become the world's largest producer of cocoa, which remains the country's most important crop; the roças system, which gave the plantation managers a high degree of authority, led to abuses against the African farm workers. Although Portugal abolished slavery in 1876, the practice of forced paid labour continued. Scientific American magazine documented in words and pictures the continued use of slaves in São Tomé in its 13 March 1897 issue. In the early 20th century, an internationally publicized controversy arose over charges that Angolan contract workers were being subjected to forced labour and unsatisfactory working conditions.
Sporadic labor unrest and dissatisfaction continued well into the 20th century, culminating in an outbreak of riots in 1953 in which several hundred African laborers were killed in a clash with their Portuguese rulers. This "Batepá Massacre" remains a major event in the colonial history of the islands, its anniversary is observed by the government. By the late 1950s, when other emerging nations across the African Continent demanded their independence, a small group of São Toméans had formed the Movement for the Liberation of São Tomé and Príncipe, which established its base in nearby Gabon. Picking up momentum in the 1960s, events moved after the overthrow of the Caetano dictatorship in Portugal in April 1974; the new Portuguese regime was committed to the dissolution of its overseas colonies. In November 1974, their representatives met with the MLSTP in Algiers and worked out an agreement for the transfer of sovereignty. After a period of transitional government, São Tomé and Príncipe achieved independence on 12 July 1975, choosing as the first president the MLSTP Secretary General
Rádio e Televisão de Portugal
Rádio e Televisão de Portugal is the public service broadcasting organisation of Portugal. It operates four national television channels and three national radio channels, as well as several satellite and cable offerings; the company came into effect on 31 March 2004 with the merger of two separate companies Radiodifusão Portuguesa and Radiotelevisão Portuguesa. RTP is a state-owned corporation funded by television advertising revenues, government grants, the taxa de contribuição audiovisual, incorporated in electricity bills; the Emissora Nacional de Radiodifusão was established on 4 August 1935 as the public national radio broadcaster, inheriting the previous broadcasting operations of the national postal service, Telégrafos e Telefones. Five years ENR became independent of the CTT. ENR was one of the 23 founding broadcasting organisations of the European Broadcasting Union in 1950. Following the Carnation Revolution, ENR was reorganised and in 1976 changed its name to Radiodifusão Portuguesa.
During this process, several private radio stations – such as Rádio Clube Português – were nationalised and integrated into RDP. In 1979, the RCP network was rebranded as Rádio Comercial, was privatised in 1993. At the same time, RDP launched the youth-oriented radio station Antena 3 and abolished advertising from all of its stations, so that the aforementioned broadcasting contribution tax became its sole source of funding. Radiotelevisão Portuguesa's television service was established on 15 December 1955. Experimental broadcasts began in September 1956 from the Feira Popular studios in Lisbon. Twenty monitors were installed in the park; the broadcast was received within a range of about 20 km. Around 1,000 TV sets are sold within a month. Regular broadcasting, did not start until 7 March 1957, by which time coverage had reached 65% of the Portuguese population. By the end of 1958 the total number of sets in Portugal was around 32,000. RTP was accepted as a full active member of the EBU in 1959.
By the mid-1960s, RTP had become available throughout the country. Robert Farnon's "Derby Day" was extensively used as RTP's fanfare to open the programming since the first day, over the decades it has become RTP's official anthem. 25 December 1968 saw the opening of a second television channel, RTP2. Two new regional channels were created in 1972 and 1975, for the Portuguese archipelagos of Madeira and the Azores. Before the Carnation Revolution, RTP was a mouthpiece of the regime, famously opened the newscast of 20 July 1969 – the day of the first moon landing – with a segment showing president Américo Thomaz opening a concrete factory. However, like many other broadcasters, it did broadcast live the landing of the man on the moon during the night; the first colour broadcast was made in 1975, with the live coverage of the first parliamentary elections after the carnation revolution. But, due to the political turmoil and the economic situation of the country, the colour regular broadcast was delayed several times for nearly 5 years.
During that time RTP started to purchase some colour equipment and make the occasional colour recording. But the pressure kept going as the black and white equipment was getting old and hard to repair, so in 1978 and 1979 a massive investment supported by a foreign loan, gave RTP the opportunity to replace all the B/W to increase the current amount of equipment and to be updated with the most advanced broadcast technologies available at the time. Despite this, only in February 1980, the government authorised the regular colour broadcast and two weeks after, on the 7th of March RTP started the regular colour broadcast, with more than 70% of the programmes being in colour. RTP moved its headquarters to a brand new building; the building was built to be converted to a hotel, but the owner decided to leave it untouched and reached an agreement with RTP for the purchase and converted the interior for office use. RTP moved to more adequate headquarters and sold the building in 2003 and the new owner converted into what is today the VIP Grand Lisboa.
Until 1991, RTP owned its transmitter network, transferred to a state-owned enterprise which, through a series of mergers, became part of Portugal Telecom. RTP held the television monopoly until 1992, the year. Over the years, RTP's audience share has reduced in favour of the private channels. 2007 was an exception to this tendency, RTP1 became the second channel most watched in Portugal, only behind TVI, a rarity which occurred again in 2009 and 2010. In 2004, RTP and RDP merged and became part of a larger state-owned holding, named Rádio e Televisão de Portugal, inaugurated the new headquarters near Parque das Nações, in Lisbon. In the same year, the second channel was rebranded as'2:', promoting itself as the civil society service. In March 2007, 2: became'RTP2' again. Due to the current financial crisis Portugal is facing, RTP was to be restructured as part of the Portuguese government's austerity plan and would have included the sale of one of the free to air channel licenses. Pressure from the public and other organisations stopped the planned sales though the restructuring plans are expected to be in presented soon and include a redundancy plan, financing for new equipment.
RTP has 16 regional offices spread all over the country, as well as international bureaus in Washington D. C. Brussels, Moscow and several other locations. RT
The Santomean passport is issued to citizens of São Tomé and Príncipe for international travel. As of 1 January 2018, Santomean citizens had visa-free or visa on arrival access to 58 countries and territories, ranking the Santomean passport 77th in terms of travel freedom according to the Henley Passport Index. Visa requirements for Santomean citizens List of passports
Districts of São Tomé and Príncipe
São Tomé and Príncipe is divided into seven administrative districts since 1980. Six are located on the main island of São Tomé. Since 1995, the Pagué District has been replaced by the Autonomous Region of Príncipe. List of cities and towns in São Tomé and Príncipe
Visa policy of São Tomé and Príncipe
Visitors to São Tomé and Príncipe must obtain a visa online or from one of the diplomatic missions of São Tomé and Príncipe prior to arrival unless they come from one of the visa exempt countries. Citizens of the following 55 countries can visit São Tomé and Príncipe without a visa for up to 15 days: Holders of diplomatic or service passports and passports for public affairs of China do not require a visa for 30 days. Holders of normal passports issued by China, Hong Kong, Macau may obtain a visa upon arrival valid for 15 days. Nationals of countries that require a visa may obtain online through an eVisaST system. An eVisa is processed within 7 working days. Holders of a visa or resident permit issued by the United States or a Schengen area member state do not require a visa for stays up to 15 days. Passengers with a confirmed onward ticket for a flight to a third country on the same calendar day; the passengers must stay in the international transit area of the airport and have documents required for the next destination.
Visa requirements for Santomean citizens
Reuters is an international news organization. It has nearly 200 locations around the world; until 2008, the Reuters news agency formed part of an independent company, Reuters Group plc, a provider of financial market data. Since the acquisition of Reuters Group by the Thomson Corporation in 2008, the Reuters news agency has been a part of Thomson Reuters, making up the media division. Reuters transmits news in English, German, Spanish, Russian, Arabic, Japanese and Chinese, it was established in 1851. The Reuter agency was established in 1851 by Paul Julius Reuter in Britain at the London Royal Exchange. Paul Reuter worked at a book-publishing firm in Berlin and was involved in distributing radical pamphlets at the beginning of the Revolutions in 1848; these publications brought much attention to Reuter, who in 1850 developed a prototype news service in Aachen using homing pigeons and electric telegraphy from 1851 on in order to transmit messages between Brussels and Aachen, in what today is Aachen's Reuters House.
Upon moving to England, he founded Reuter's Telegram Company in 1851. Headquartered in London, the company covered commercial news, serving banks, brokerage houses, business firms; the first newspaper client to subscribe was the London Morning Advertiser in 1858. Afterwards more newspapers signed up, with Britannica Encyclopedia writing that "the value of Reuters to newspapers lay not only in the financial news it provided but in its ability to be the first to report on stories of international importance." Reuter's agency built a reputation in Europe and the rest of the world as the first to report news scoops from abroad. Reuters was the first to report Abraham Lincoln's assassination in Europe, for instance, in 1865. In 1872, Reuters expanded into the far east, followed by South America in 1874. Both expansions were made possible by advances in overland telegraphs and undersea cables. In 1883, Reuters began transmitting messages electrically to London newspapers. In 1923, Reuters began using radio to transmit a pioneering act.
In 1925, The Press Association of Great Britain acquired a majority interest in Reuters, full ownership some years later. During the world wars, The Guardian reported that Reuters "came under pressure from the British government to serve national interests. In 1941 Reuters deflected the pressure by restructuring itself as a private company." The new owners formed the Reuters Trust. In 1941, the PA sold half of Reuters to the Newspaper Proprietors' Association, co-ownership was expanded in 1947 to associations that represented daily newspapers in New Zealand and Australia; the Reuters Trust Principles were put in place to maintain the company's independence. At that point, Reuters had become "one of the world's major news agencies, supplying both text and images to newspapers, other news agencies, radio and television broadcasters." At that point, it directly or through national news agencies provided service "to most countries, reaching all the world's leading newspapers and many thousands of smaller ones," according to Britannica.
In 1961, Reuters scooped news of the erection of the Berlin Wall. Reuters was one of the first news agencies to transmit financial data over oceans via computers in the 1960s. In 1973, Reuters "began making computer-terminal displays of foreign-exchange rates available to clients." In 1981, Reuters began making electronic transactions on its computer network and afterwards developed a number of electronic brokerage and trading services. Reuters was floated as a public company in 1984, when Reuters Trust was listed on the stock exchanges such as the London Stock Exchange and NASDAQ. Reuters published the first story of the Berlin Wall being breached in 1989; the share price grew during the dotcom boom fell after the banking troubles in 2001. In 2002, Brittanica wrote that most news throughout the world came from three major agencies: the Associated Press and Agence France-Presse. Reuters merged with Thomson Corporation in Canada in 2008. In 2009, Thomson Reuters withdrew from the LSE and the NASDAQ, instead listing its shares on the Toronto Stock Exchange and the New York Stock Exchange.
The last surviving member of the Reuters family founders, Baroness de Reuter, died at age 96 on 25 January 2009. The parent company Thomson Reuters is headquartered in Toronto, provides financial information to clients while maintaining its traditional news-agency business. In 2012, Thomson Reuters appointed Jim Smith as CEO; every major news outlet in the world subscribed to Reuters as of 2014. Reuters operated in more than 200 cities in 94 countries in about 20 languages as of 2014. In July 2016, Thomson Reuters agreed to sell its intellectual property and science operation for $3.55 billion to private equity firms. In October 2016, Thomson Reuters announced relocations to Toronto; as part of cuts and restructuring, in November 2016, Thomson Reuters Corp. eliminated 2,000 worldwide jobs out of its around 50,000 employees. Reuters employs 600 photojournalists in about 200 locations worldwide. Reuters journalists use the Reuters Handbook of Journalism as a guide for fair presentation and disclosure of relevant interests, to maintain the values of integrity and freedom upon which their reputation for reliability, accuracy and exclusivity relies.
In May 2000, Kurt Schork, an American reporter, was killed in an ambush while on assignment in Sierra Leone. In April and August 2003, news cameramen Taras Protsyuk and Mazen Dana were killed in separate incidents by U. S. troops in Iraq. In July 2007, Namir Noor-Eldeen and Saeed Chmagh were killed when they w