After the team’s arrest at Capanda Dam and subsequent transport to Malanje things went from bad to worse. Having had all of their equipment and clothing confiscated, bar what they were wearing at the time, negotiations with local authorities broke down resulting in them being escorted under armed guard back to Angola’s capital, Luanda. At least their equipment was returned to them at this point (minus passports) after extensive photographs were taken lest anyone should accuse the authorities of stealing.
From there further negotiations were required which, unsurprisingly given recent attitudes from the authorities, did not go well. Oscar and Alfy were finally told that they could collect their passports from the immigration office the next morning which seemed positive. But as expected, further complications arose.
The team was immediately arrested at immigration and taken to a detainment camp at Viana outside of Luanda where they were told they would be held for the weekend while their fate was decided. The British and Italian Consuls arrived and negotiated for over 8 hours for the team’s release. Finally after 3 days of negotiations, Oscar and Alfy gained their freedom.
It is safe to say that this has hampered the expedition in the final run and now the future is uncertain as the team stays in Luanda to seek further permissions from officials.
We hope to bring more positive news in the near future but currently the attempt on the Kwanza is suspended until further notice.
Keep up to date with the team’s progress via the following links:
Official website with videos, links and GPS tracker: http://kayakthekwanza.com/
Justgiving donation page: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/kayakthekwanza
Other enquiries please get in touch with Jonathan Scafidi: [email protected]