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Mozambique on Monday sent a diplomatic request for the extradition of former finance minister Manuel Chang, accused by the United States of involvement in Mozambique’s ‘hidden debts’ scheme.
Speaking to Lusa at the end of Chang’s hearing on Tuesday, Zacarias Cossa, a defence attaché to the Mozambican embassy in South Africa, said that he expected the Maputo extradition request to be treated the same as that made by the United States.
“The Mozambican government sent the request for the extradition of Mr Manuel Chang via the diplomatic channel yesterday (Monday, February 4). We hope that, in due time, the request will be submitted to the court so that it can also be examined in a timely manner along with the request from the United States,” the Mozambican diplomat said.
“We will be facing competing requests for the extradition of the same person sought by the United States as well as by the state from which Manuel Chang originates,” he added.
Cossa later told Lusa that “Mozambique submitted its request for extradition through the diplomatic channel at the South African Embassy in Maputo.”
The US authorities accuse Manuel Chang of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, securities fraud and money laundering.
Chang was detained at O. R. Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg on the basis of an international arrest warrant issued by the United States on December 27.
Manuel Chang was Mozambique’s finance minister during Armando Guebuza’s 2005-2010 mandate, during which the Mozambican executive endorsed the so-called ‘hidden debts’ – state-guaranteed loans contracted between 2013 and 2014 in favour of three public companies linked to maritime safety and fishing.Source: Lusa