A diplomatic row is brewing between South Africa and Mozambique. This comes after Mozambique’s former Minister of Finance Manuel Chang was arrested in South Africa.
On Wednesday, Chang was back in the Kempton Park Magistrate’s Court, which ruled that his detention was legal.
Chang was arrested at the OR Tambo International Airport in December over alleged secret loans totalling R2 billion to Mozambican state companies.
United States (US) authorities accuse Changa of conspiracy to commit fraud and money laundering. He has denied any wrongdoing.
The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) has learnt that President Cyril Ramaphosa will travel to Mozambique on Monday to discuss the issue with his counterpart, Filipe Nyusi.
However, the Minister of International Relations, Lindiwe Sisulu, says the issue is not on the two leaders’ agenda.
“The President is free to go and see his counterparts anytime. It has nothing to do with the Hanekom and the Minister of Finance whatsoever. Interpol and ourselves have a binding protocol where they can make a request for us to stop a passenger passing through our ports and give reason for it. If we’re satisfied with that reason, we act on it. This is what we did with the former Minister of Mozambique. Our ambassador in Mozambique went to investigate, found Mr Hanekom and was able to interact with Mr Hanekom,” says Sisulu.
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