21 February 2019

South Africa: Former Mozambican Finance Minister Won't Be Extradited to U.S., Sisulu Announces

Photo: VOAPortugues
Mozambique's former finance minister Manuel Chang appears in court during an extradition hearing in Johannesburg.

Former Mozambican finance minister Manuel Chang will be extradited by South Africa to Mozambique and not to the US to face major corruption charges, Pretoria has revealed. The move could allow Maputo to limit the political damage in the huge corruption case Chang is involved in.

Manuel Chang is in a South African jail awaiting the decision of South African authorities on whether to send him to the US or back home to be tried on charges related to embezzling part of a US$2-billion loan to fund Mozambican government shipping projects. The scandal almost bankrupted the country three years ago. South African authorities arrested him at OR Tambo International Airport on December 29, 2018, while en route to Dubai.

He was arrested on a warrant issued by Interpol on behalf of the US government which seeks to extradite him to the US to face charges of conspiracy to commit wire and securities fraud and money laundering during his tenure as minister of finance between 2005 and 2015.

The charges relate to huge loans which international banks extended to the Mozambique government to establish a tuna fishing fleet as well as a fleet of security patrol vessels. The US indictment states...

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