Part of my 2009 flag proposal series. SVG files of the flag and its construction sheet are available on request.
Note: My choice of design does not reflect my political views.
The current design
Critics of the current flag contend that it is too attached to the past (the emblem was intended to echo the Soviet hammer-and-sickle), does not reflect the change in situation and gives a bad impression of the country by looking aggressive, pessimistic and warlike (it features a machete, for example).
This prompted an official contest in 2003 to produce a more optimistic design, but the result was heavily opposed. That proposal was said to be too similar to other countries’ flags (Costa Rica and North Korea), to have no relevant meaning, to neglect the country’s history and to look ugly and childish (it’s got a cave drawing on it). Therefore, here is my proposal.
First off, this design is unique enough to be distinguishable, yet simple enough to be remembered by a child.
The overall scene is intuitive and clear. It depicts the sun rising above the horizon, lighting up the morning sky, inspired by the lower part of the national coat of arms. This represents a new beginning for Angola; a bright future, positive, optimistic and inevitable. The sun in general represents warmth, vitality and life. It also represents equality, since the sun shines for everyone, unity, since it is one object, and power, since it contains so much energy.
The background layout is derived from the current flag, suggesting continuity and aiding recognition. Apart from being the sky and the ground, referenced in the above paragraph, it also symbolises the country’s past. The red represents the bloodshed and the black represents the dark parts of Angola’s history. The rising sun symbolises a force that will remove these aspects from the whole of the country.
The individual colours of the flag have additional meanings. The red represents the blood that we all share, suggesting unity and equality. The black represents the people, not only those in Angola but also in the whole of Africa. The yellow represents the mineral wealth of the country. These colours are all present in the current flag, so any further symbolism they have can be carried over as well.