Nissan's chief performance officer, José Muñoz, has resigned from the company in an expanded investigation into alleged financial misconduct of former president Carlos Ghosn. Muñoz, 54, who was also the head of the Chinese Nissan business, had a hand on the rudder of the company's North American operations.
The sudden departure of Muñoz, who arrives a few days after the execution of the executive, indicates unrest in the upper grades of the Japanese automaker, with an insider who called it a "purge".
The news of the departure of the executive broke late Friday night, with Nissan declaring that the resignation was effective immediately. In an e-mail to colleagues obtained from Automotive News Muñoz said that the decision came after "a period of serious contemplation", adding: "Unfortunately, Nissan is currently involved in issues that have and will continue to As I have repeatedly and recently clarified to the company, I look forward to continuing to assist Nissan in his investigations. "
While Ghosn languishes in a Tokyo prison, facing three indictments and Waiting for trial, a Nissan insider told Automotive News of a "purge" of the executives of the Ghosn era. Senior Vice President Arun Bajaj also took leave.
The time of Muñoz's departure is sufficient to raise eyebrows. Just a few hours before the news of his resignation, Reuters reported that Nissan's investigations into financial crimes had spread to other countries, with Muñoz listed as a person of interest. One source claimed that the leave arrived as a result of the probe. From 2014 to 2016, Munoz was senior vice president of Nissan North America before moving to the president's seat and was seen as very close to Ghosn.
Other sources claim that Muñoz was not collaborating with Nissan's internal investigation.  Earlier this week, Ghosn spoke publicly at a court hearing in Tokyo, denying the charges against him and insisting that his financial practices were above the border  [Image: Nissan]