Mozambique to fight for extradition of former finance minister over debt scandal

Chang has been in custody in South Africa since his arrest in December at the request of the United States for his alleged involvement in $2 billion of borrowing U.S. authorities say was fraudulent. He denies wrongdoing.

Former South African justice minister Michael Masutha decided before leaving his post to extradite Chang to Mozambique, however his successor, Ronald Lamola, and a Mozambique civil society organisation have applied to the courts to have this set aside.

An affidavit filed on Lamola’s behalf in mid-July said he wanted an opportunity to consider whether Chang could be extradited to the United States, where he faces charges including money laundering and conspiracy to commit fraud.

Now, a letter, from South African law firm Mabunda Incorporated and dated July 30, says the Mozambique government has instructed the firm to oppose these applications and bring a counter application in favour of Chang’s extradition to Mozambique.

Alternatively, it said it would push for Lamola to consider current information and facts as will be presented and argued in upcoming hearings, as oppose to just the facts available when the former minister made his decision.

When contacted by Reuters about the letter, a Justice Ministry spokesman said it is now a matter for the courts.

Source: Angola Press News Agency