Namibia: 'American Dreams' Shattered - No More Entry for Esau, Shanghala and Families to the U.S.

The United States Embassy in Namibia today announced the public designation of former government officials Bernhardt Esau and Sakeus Shanghala, due to their involvement in significant corruption.

This designation is made under Section 7031(c) of the US Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act, 2021, rendering Esau and Sanghala ineligible for entry into the United States.

In a statement issued on 15 June, Walter Parrs, Spokesperson, U.S. Embassy in Namibia said the designation also applies the immediate family members of the two.

"Accordingly, in addition to Esau and Shanghala, we are publicly designating the following members of Bernhardt Esau's family, who are now also ineligible for entry into the United States: his wife, Swamma Esau, and his son, Philippus Esau," Parrs said.

In their official capacities as Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources (Esau) and Minister of Justice (Shanghala), they were involved in corrupt acts that undermined rule of law and the Namibian public's faith in their government's democratic institutions and public processes, including by using their political influence and official power for their personal benefit. The two have been in jail since late 2019.

"This designation reaffirms the U.S. commitment to supporting anti-corruption reforms that are key to Namibia's successful future. The United States continues to stand with all Namibians in support of democracy and the rule of law, and against those who would undermine these principles for personal gain. The Department will continue to use authorities like this to promote accountability for corrupt actors in this region and globally," Parrs added.

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