Public Designation of Former Namibian Public Officials for Involvement in Significant Corruption

We are announcing today the public designation of former Namibian government officials Bernhardt Esau and Sakeus Shanghala, due to their involvement in significant corruption.  In their official capacities as Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources (Esau) and Minister of Justice (Shanghala), they were involved in corrupt acts that undermined rule of law and the Namibian public’s faith in their government’s democratic institutions and public processes, including by using their political influence and official power for their personal benefit.

This designation is made under Section 7031(c) of the Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act, 2021.  This action renders Esau and Sanghala ineligible for entry into the United States.

The authority also requires the designation of a principal’s immediate family members. Accordingly, in addition to Esau and Shanghala, we are publicly designating the following members of Bernhardt Esau’s family, who are now also ineligible for entry into the United States: his wife, Swamma Esau, and his son, Philippus Esau.

This designation reaffirms the U.S. commitment to supporting anticorruption reforms that are key to Namibia’s successful future.  The United States continues to stand with all Namibians in support of democracy and the rule of law, and against those who would undermine these principles for personal gain.  The Department will continue to use authorities like this to promote accountability for corrupt actors in this region and globally.

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