Pretoria - The extradition of former Mozambique finance minister and member of parliament Manuel Chang to Mozambique has been halted "by a new set of facts", the justice and correctional services ministry said on Saturday.
Chang is reportedly wanted in connection with alleged fraudulent loans to state companies in Mozambique. He was reportedly arrested at OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg in December last year and held at the request of United States authorities wanting him to be extradited to the US.
Justice and Correctional Services Minister Ronald Lamola had authorised the department's director general Vusi Madonsela to file papers "in response to Mr Manuel Chang's urgent application to be surrendered to the Mozambique authorities", the ministry said in a statement.
"The minister also received additional papers from a Mozambican NGO seeking review of the Kempton Park Magistrate's Court that found Mr Chang is extraditable to Mozambique. Upon legal advice, the minister decided not to oppose the application.
"The department filed its own application on the same matter, placing before the court new information that only emerged after the former minister [Michael Masutha] had decided to extradite Mr Chang to Mozambique. Such information pertains to double immunity that Mr Chang enjoys in terms of Mozambican law," the statement said.