Fradique de Menezes

Fradique de Menezes is a São Toméan businessman and Foreign Minister who became the 3rd elected president of São Tomé and Príncipe serving two terms from 2003 – 2011. A beloved president, Fradique strived to govern peacefully even pardoning political rivals who staged a coup against him. Always diplomatic, Menezes even went so far as to suggest that he would leave office if he were “the reason that things are not working in this country”. During his terms, Fradique invested wealth from newly discovered oil reserves back into the welfare of the nation’s people. In recognition of his ethical practices, Menezes has been the recipient of the Zik Leadership Award, as well as, the Federation of World Peace and Love’s World Cultural Peace Award.

Illustration by Katie King Rumford

São Tomé and Principé

The modern art from the small island nation of São Tomé and Principé—a result of Portuguese colonization—exhibits strong European influence. This portrait of Fradique de Menezes blends the colorful palette typical of the islands with impressionist flavor. The soft edges and warm colors invoke the inclusive spirit in which Menezes sought to lead his country.

Total Area
964 km2 (184th)

São Toméan, Santomean

Unitary semi-presidential republic


São Tomé