A court in South Africa has ordered the auction of a superyacht and two choice properties belonging to Equatorial Guinea’s Vice-President Teodoro Nguema Obiang Mangue as payment for a botched airline deal that resulted in the illegal arrest and torture of a South African businessman.
Mr Obiang is the son of President Teodoro Obiang who has been in power for the past 43 years and is most likely to succeed his father.
Daniel Janse van Rensburg, a South African businessman, said he was illegally arrested and tortured in a Guinea prison for two years on Mr Obiang’s order despite several pleas over the failed contract.
Mr Rensburg said he was contracted by Gabriel Angabi, the then-mayor of the capital city of Equatorial Guinea, to build a private airline over a decade ago. After working on the deal for two years, the mayor cancelled the project and asked for a refund.
The mayor conspired with Mr Obiang, then-security minister, to jail the South African in Guinea’s most notorious prison.
“And that is when he phoned Teodorin junior. He was, at that time, the minister of security and in charge of the jail. So, he got authorisation from him to put me into Black Beach,” Mr Rensburg said.
Mr Rensburg was illegally detained in the gulag for almost two years and tortured. The South African businessman blamed his imprisonment on the Equatorial Guinean vice-president, not Mr Angabi.
“Because he was responsible for having me put into jail and keeping me there as well,” Mr Rensburg explained. “You know we have documentation from the South African embassy in Malabo to prove this, that they asked him a few times to speak to him, to ask him to look at this and to set me free, and he always kept on refusing.”
The South African explained that he could only secure his release from the prison with the assistance of a fellow inmate’s lawyer.
The Equatorial Guinea government had yet to comment on the ruling.