Latest News! Former president Armando Guebuza testifies on debt scandals

President-Guebuza-inaugurates-Nacala-Airport-1guebuza

On the morning of Monday 28 November, former president Armando Guebuza testified to a parliamentary inquiry over the US$2-billion in state debts contracted by three companies linked to the secret services during his last term in office. Guebuza attended the inquiry from 9:00hrs to 10:00hrs on Monday morning, accompanied by three members of the so-called ‘G40’ group of pro-Guebuza hardliners – former transport minister Gabriel Muthisse, and lawyers Alexandre Chivale and Isálcio Mahanjane – as well as the head of Guebuza’s personal office, Armindo Chavane.

Guebuza’s testimony, which was not open to the media, comes at the last minute for the Parliamentary Inquiry Commission, which is expected to submit its report to parliament on Wednesday 30 November, as all hearings were supposed to happen in October. The former president is seen as a key figure in the scandal that has now left Mozambique bankrupt after the government signed sovereign guarantees for US$2-billion worth of borrowing by three companies in 2013 and 2014.

The companies are making losses and questions remain over what the money was spent on. The discovery of the debt led to the IMF and western donors cutting off financial aid to Mozambique, pending a full investigation. Guebuza himself is widely expected to be protected from any repercussions by his party, Frelimo.

Almost all members of the parliamentary commission are members of Frelimo, which has ruled Mozambique since independence in 1975. The main opposition party, Renamo, boycotted the commission on learning that it would have Frelimo majority. The only opposition member of the commission is Venâncio Mondlane of the third party, the MDM. The commission was established by parliament to look into the borrowing of US$2-billion by state fishing company Ematum, and maritime security companies, Proindicus and MAM. Specifically, the parliamentary resolution asked it to investigate:

The legality of the debts taken out;

The shareholder structure of Proindicus, Ematum and MAM;

Economic and financial feasibility studies for the three companies;

The terms of the financing deals that were given government guarantees;

The total public debt of Mozambique;

The sustainability of Mozambique’s public debt.

Separately, international forensic investigations company Kroll has been commissioned to investigate the same deals. It started investigations last week, Zitamar News has learn, and should report by the end of February.

Source: Zitamar News

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