Mozambique’s former president’s Son arrested in graft case

Vastavam web: The son of Mozambique’s former president Armando Guebuza was arrested on Saturday in a legal crackdown on suspects linked to a USD 2 billion government debt scandal, local media and judiciary sources said. Ndabi Guebuza, the oldest of Guebuza’s four children, was picked up from his home in the capital Maputo.

Maputo-based independent STV channel said he was arrested in connection with a government debt which plunged the country into its worst financial crisis. “He is one of the eight arrested by order of the Attorney General,” a judiciary source who asked not to be named, told AFP. The scandal came to light in 2016, a year after the ex-leader Guebuza left office following a 10-year tenure. It is alleged that while he was still in power, the government in Maputo had taken out loans amounting to 2 billion to buy a tuna-fishing fleet and surveillance ships, but hid the transaction from parliament and international donors.

An independent audit found that a quarter of the loan amount was diverted, and unaccounted for. When the debt was revealed, Mozambique — which is one of the world’s poorest countries and relies on donor aid — was plunged into the worst financial crisis in its history as donors froze contributions. Chang, 63, was arrested at Johannesburg’s O.R. Tambo International Airport on December 29 on a US extradition request over his alleged involvement in the fraudulent loans to state firms. He was denied bail on Thursday.