Rustenburg - South Africa will extradite former Mozambican finance minister Manuel Chang to his home country, the Department of Justice confirmed this week.
"As the facts stand now, the accused is not immune from prosecution and has been duly indicted by the Mozambican government. The Ministry of Justice and Correctional Services therefore confirms that a decision has been taken to extradite the accused to Mozambique," spokesperson Chrispin Phiri said in a statement dated August 23.
Chang was arrested in December 2018 at OR Tambo International, where he was heading Dubai. He has been in custody since his arrest.
He is wanted in Mozambique on charges of fraud and corruption for allegedly receiving millions of dollars in bribes to sign off on about $2.2 billion in loans from Swiss banking giant Credit Suisse and a Russian bank to Mozambique government agencies to buy fishing trawlers and military patrol vessels in 2013 and 2014.
He is charged alongside 19 other people, including Armando Ndambi Guebuza, the son of former president Armando Guebuza.
The biggest financial scandal trial, called “hidden debts“, started on Monday and is being held in a giant tent at Machava high-security prison in the capital city of Maputo.
Mozambican media reported that the court heard on its second day how former defence minister, now president, Filipe Nyusi and former president Armando Guebuza were involved in the scandal.
According to online news outlet O Pais, Nyusi led some meetings in the design phase of the project that led to the creation of a company called ProIndicus. Armando Guebuza, on the other hand, was aware of all the processes up to the creation of the company.
The company and two others were allegedly used to sign off the loan.
According to media reports, prosecutor Sheila Marrengula has asked the court to order that all the accused should pay back the $2.902 billion to the state with interest.
African News Agency (ANA)