Once completed, this would be the second most expensive private yacht in the world after Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich’s megayacht Eclipse.
A human rights group, Global Witness has claimed that the €288 million ($396 million) luxury yacht has been commissioned by the son of Equatorial Guinea ruler Teodoro Obiang Nguema.
The secret project has been codenamed Zen. This luxurious English-designed and German-built private yacht will come complete with a cinema, swimming pool, bar, restaurant, helipad and a security system complete with floor motion sensors and fingerprint door openers.
President Obiang’s son Teodoro Nguema Obiang Mangue, also known as Teodorin, is the agriculture and forestry minister of the small oil-rich state on the west coast of Africa. The 118.5-meter-long (390 feet) yacht has been modeled after Roman Abramovich’s yacht. The NGO further said that the basic design was completed in 2009 with a planned delivery date of late 2012, but construction hasn’t begun as of now.
The Born Rich: Equatorial Guinea, the third-biggest oil producer in Africa, is one of the most corrupt and worst violators of human rights in Africa, thanks to corruption and poor laws. Teodorin’s father, Teodoro Obiang is listed by Forbes magazine as one of the richest rulers in the world, with a fortune worth $600 million. He lives the life of an international playboy and owns a fleet of luxury cars. His purchase of $34 million mansion in Malibu, California was listed in Forbes magazine.
The Other Side: Equatorial Guinea is an oil-rich country, but poverty and illness are widespread. The United Nations has reported that more than half of the country’s population doesn’t get clean water and nearly one-fifth of its children die before the age of 5. The news of Teodorin’s yacht purchase certainly raises eyebrows. Gavin Hayman, a campaigner at Global Witness, said…
The cost of the planned yacht is a staggering sum. The design alone has cost $342,000. That a president’s son from such a poor country has ordered this yacht is outrageous extravagance.
On the other hand, Teodoro Nguema Obiang Mangue has told US diplomats that he has been very lucky in business and he likes to live well, and his purchase of the world’s second most expensive private yacht clearly states the same.
But who is this clown?
According to Wikipedia, Teodoro Nguema Obiang Mangue (born c.1971, nicknamed Teodorín) is the son of Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, the president of Equatorial Guinea, by his first wife, Constancia Okomo. According to opposition figures, Teodoro is the favourite to succeed his father, who is rumored to be suffering from prostate cancer. He is much feared and reviled but exercises power through his domination of Equatoguinean media, being the owner of the only private radio station, Radio Asonga and the director of state owned TV Asonga.
Teodoro, officially the agriculture and forestry minister in his father’s government, lives much of the time in Paris, London, Rio de Janeiro, and Malibu. He drew criticism from the international media for spending close to R10,000,000 over a weekend in South Africa on champagne, property renovations, a black 2004 Bentley Arnage, a cream 2005 Bentley Continental R from MG Rover Cape Town and a 2005 Lamborghini Murcielago, although the properties may soon be forcibly auctioned due to his failure to pay a South African businessman. American law enforcement officials believe that most or perhaps all of his wealth comes from corruption connected to oil and gas reserves in Equatorial Guinea.
Obiangs’ foreign concerns include two houses in South Africa, worth a combined R50,000,000 , a $31,000,000 compound in Malibu, California, a 5,000 square feet (460 m2) home in the affluent 16th arrondissement of Paris, and the hip hop music record label TNO Entertainment. He also owns (as of 2008) one of the 30 models of the Bugatti Veyron 16.4 sports car  (estimated at 1 100 000 euros) and a Maserati MC 12 at 700 000 euros.
Parrale Parallel Information on the heir-apparent
In 1991 Obiang went to Pepperdine University in Malibu, where he studied English as a second language. The same year he was rumored to have been arrested for cocaine smuggling. He was sentenced for similar crimes in France twice in that decade.
He owned a record label, called TNO Entertainment. It’s now defunct, but the website is cached here. Ron Carter, who used to represent Michael Jackson and Quincy Jones, did the PR for the label. He said, via email, that Obiang now also spends a lot of time in Mali where he may have further assets.
Obiang once hired Microsoft billionaire Paul Allen’s 300-foot yacht Tatoosh for either $400,000 or $700,000, depending on who you believe. Why? To impress the rapper Eve, who he’s been on-again-off-again dating for several years. The Times of London report that he took her on a Christmas cruise on the boat – he apparently likes cruises: Harper’s magazine report that he had another woman airlifted to shore after an argument on another cruise-ship. He is also rumored to have dated model Noemie Lenoir and actress Tiffany Limos.
His property portfolio includes a $35m estate in Malibu, purchased with cash, where neighbors include Dick van Dyke, James Cameron and Mel Gibson, as well as a couple of estates in Cape Town, South Africa. His fleet of cars includes a couple of Bentleys and a Lamborghini. The New York Times report adds a Gulfstream V jet to his extravagant modes of transport.