Zambia’s Attan Shansonga named in Panama Papers

Filed under: Exclusives,Statements |

panamaThe Media Institute of Southern Africa has applauded the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) who coordinated the efforts of hundreds of journalists and news agencies from around in an investigation that has culminated in the release of the ‘Panama Papers – Politicians, Criminals and the Rogue Industry that Hides Their Cash’.

Attan Shansonga who served to as ambassador to the United States between 2000 and 2002 has been named in the Germany News Sudeutsche Zeitung which published hundreds of thousands of people including world leaders, celebrity athletes, FIFA officials and criminals hiding money anonymous shell corporation across the world.

The Panamanian law firm is regarded as one of the world’s most secretive companies, helped clients launders money, dodges sanctions and evade tax.

The Nerve Africa Online newspaper has published 18 african names that were found in Panama papers including Attan Shansonga.

Mr. Shansonga was arrested in 2002 amid an investigation into the diversion of millions of dollars out of Zambia when President Frederik Chiluba’s was in office.

Mr. Shansonga fled the country in 2004 and, two years later, was accused of receiving “misappropriated monies” and using offshore accounts to launder the loot.

In 1998, Shansonga became a director of Starflight Ventures Limited, Stacey Investment Holdings Ltd and Debden Investments Limited.

The activities of these companies were not revealed.

In 2005, Mossack Fonseca received court documents because it was the agent for Hearnville Estates Ltd., a British Virgin Islands-based company named as one of 20 defendants, including Mr. Shansonga himself, in a corruption case that the Levy Mwanawasa administration pursued in an English court.

The Panama Papers lifts the lid on how offshore companies are used by the global elite to conceal the ownership and control of assets and property worth billions.

“This is a most excellent illustration of journalism at its best, doing what it is intended to do by holding those in power to account. It is thanks to investigative reporters, whistleblowers and unprecedented international media collaboration that the matter is now in the public domain”, says MISA Chairperson Luckson Chipare.

The year-long investigation into a leak of more than 11.5 million financial and legal records, was undertaken by a reported 400 journalists from over 100 news agencies in more than 80 countries.

According to the ICIJ the investigation “allows a never-before-seen view inside the offshore world – providing a day-to-day, decade-by-decade look at how dark money flows through the global financial system, breeding crime and stripping national treasuries of tax revenues”.

This exposé continues to reverberate around the globe in its exposure of corruption and wrongdoing on a grand scale.
As reports unfold, as they are expected to over the next few months, we encourage the ICIJ project managers and journalists to continue their work in the public interest.