Equatorial Guinea President's Son's $ 100 Million is “Just
Business,” Pro Moroccan
September 1 -- With Equatorial Guinea under scrutiny for
executions and locking up reporters, it's Permanent Representative to
the UN Anatolio Ndong Mba spoke to the Press on Wednesday.
Press, which covered
the Equato-guinean response to the US Senate's
report on corrupt finance six months ago, asked Anatolio Ndong Mba
where the son of President Teodoro
got the $100 million he transferred into
the US. Video here,
from Minute 26:03.
Mba replied that the president's son Teodorin is “free to do his
business.” But Inner City Press asked, what is his business? Video here,
“He could make
buildings, he could rent houses,” Anatolio Ndong Mba said. But the
president's son has a $30 million mansion in Malibu and a recording
Mba argued that with so much money coming into the country from oil
companies, with so much “development,” money could not be
diverted. “Morocco invests,” he said, giving an example.
executions, what about crack downs on the media, Inner City Press
asked, including the imprisonment of Rodrigo Nguema, the only foreign
in Malabo? Video here,
from Minute 33:44.
To this was
was no answer
except that the country aimed to improve. Anatolio Ndong Mba
mentioned the Emirates, saying that in other counties, no on asks
where money comes from.
UN's Ban and Anatolio Ndong
Mba, $100 million not shown
conference, after the applause of the mission's ringers, Inner City
Press asked Anatolio Ndong Mba if his country for example supported
a referendum in Western Sahara with independence as an option. No,
Anatolio Ndong Mba said.
Inner City Press asked. Anatolio Ndong Mba said Equatorial Guinea's
foreign policy favors Kosovar independence. Both positions are
America's. But a staffer of Anatolio Ndong Mba explained that it
comes down to relations with Morocco. Consistency be damned. Watch
* * *
of Citigroup and BofA, Obiangs Cite Obama, ExxonMobil's
February 15 -- Ten days after the release by the U.S. Senate
of a report on evasion by the son of Equatorial Guinea's President
for Life Teodoro Nguema
laundering controls by and at Citigroup, Bank of America,
Wachovia / Wells Fargo and others, the Obiang regime fired back,
calling the report racist and citing in its defense the election of
Inner City Press is putting the Obiangs' memo online, here.
exhaustively shows how Teodorin and his lawyers moved tens of
millions of dollars through Citibank and Wachovia (owned by Wells
Fargo since the financial meltdown), and used accounts at Bank of
America, City National and other banks. The report described how
$100 million into the United States using wire transfer systems
at just two U.S. financial institutions, Wachovia Bank and Citibank.
Neither system had been programmed to detect or block wire transfers
bearing his name. In 2009... Citibank declined to take the same
action due to projections that identifying, freezing, and
investigating these wire transfers would generate too much work for
its anti-money laundering staff...From 2004 to 2007, Mr. Obiang used
accounts at three U.S. banks, Union Bank of California, Bank of
America, and Citibank, often with Mr. Berger’s assistance, to
deposit, transfer and spend nearly $10 million. Most of these funds
were wire transferred from accounts in Equatorial Guinea held in the
name of Mr. Obiang or two EG companies he controlled, Somagui
Forestal and Socage."
Government of Equatorial Guinea in a communique sent to the Press on
February 15, the President's Day holiday in the U.S., argues that
Equatoguinean legislation, as occurs exactly in the most of the
world, the natural and legal persons, as occurs in this case with the
Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, are perfectly authorized to do
business and maintain other types of jobs at the margin of their
business includes a $30 million mansion in
Malibu, a jet and recording studio, among other things. Previously he
and his president for life father Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo moved
their money, like Pinochet, into the U.S. through Riggs Bank.
and its Fair Finance Watch dug into these connections, including to
Spain's Santander Bank and HSBC, when the Obiang disgraced Riggs was
being sold to PNC Bank. Click here for coverage
in Le Monde, in French.
Federal Reserve did little at that
time. With the major banks it regulates now implicated again in
corrupt money laundering, what will the supposedly chastened Federal
President for life Obiang, speaking at the UN, Citi
and BofA not shown
response complains that the Senate report deals only with African
corruption -- Angola with HSBC, Gabon's Omar Bongo with Citigroup,
Nigeria's Abubakar with Suntrust and the ubiquitous Citibank -- and
not any other continent. In this, it echoes the defenders of Sudan's
Omar al Bashir, that the International Criminal Court and its
prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo have so far indicted only African
Guinea goes further. Its cover e-mail to Inner City Press argues that
"it can be considered as an authentic insult to Africa, and more
so after the people of the United States have voted in the majority
for a President of African origin."
letters, Equatorial Guinea screams that
and in Equatorial Guinea we are tired of BEING TREATED FOR
CENTURIES LIKE INHUMAN BEASTS, ON WHICH ALL THE BRUTAL AND EVIL
BEHAVIOURS POSSIBLE ARE BLAMED. This is again so verifiable in this
case that even different media of the United States have written
these days, in regards to this case, THAT THE FAMILY OBIANG PRACTICES
ICC's and Ocampo's indictees, Jean Pierre Bemba, the previous Vice
President of the Congo, argued during his campaign against Joseph
Kabila that, "I am not a cannibal!"
defense that's closest to the mark is that
wish to put on the record that the United States is the country
from which comes the highest foreign investment in Equatorial Guinea,
which exceeds 12 billion USA dollars, and that no American
corporation has complained of fraudulent behaviour of the Government.
We also expect the Senate Subcommittee to be consistent with the
criteria of the North American companies."
should it be
the other way around? Major U.S. investors with the Obiangs include
ExxonMobil, Marathon Oil, Hess Corporation, and Noble Energy. We will
have more on all this.