Nouakchott — Angolan Foreign Minister Manuel Augusto on Monday denied reports that the businessman and former Mauritanian presidential candidate Rachid Mustafa was in captivity in Angola.
Speaking to the press, after his participation in the recently concluded African Union (AU) Summit in Nouakchott, Mauritania, Manuel Augusto said that Mustafa was involved in a plane crash ein an airplan when travelling from Pointe- Noire in the neighboring Republic of Congo to Luanda.
Rachid Mustafa disappeared on May 21, 2010, when travelling from Pointe- Noire (Republic of Congo) to Luanda on a plane belonging to the Angolan group Chicoil, a B2-00 which also disappeared without leaving any trace.
According to the minister, the searches carried out at the time by the Angolan authorities did not locate any wreckage of the plane, much less confirmed that the accident had actually occurred in the national territory.
On the other hand, added Manuel Augusto, the Angolan authorities have always dealt with Rachid Mustafa as a Mauritanian businessman who normally carried out his business in Angolan territory, and had never come to his knowledge that he was a former presidential candidate.
In a letter allegedly addressed to the Angolan Foreign Minister, which is circulating on social networks, the family of Rachid Mustafa asks the intervention of the Angolan Government to clarify the case.
A Mauritanian journalist asked the minister if Angola was aware that Rachid would be alive and in the custody of an unidentified person who held him in captivity in the country as alleged by his family and according to speculations in Mauritania.
Manuel Augusto said that the Angolan Government is not aware of this fact and in case Rachid Mustafa is alive and his alleged captivity also to exists, this would certainly not be happening in the Angolan territory, but elsewhere in another country.
Described as a "very wealthy businessman" from Guerou in Assaba (eastern Mauritania), Rachid Mustafa was a presidential candidate in 2007, according to information circulating in that country.