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    Report on unaccounted-for revenue rejected

    JALALABAD (PAN): The customs department head in eastern Nangarhar province on Tuesday rejected the claim that hundreds of millions of afghanis had not been accounted for at the Torkham customs office.

    In an exclusive interview with Pajhwok Afghan News, Khaleequllah spurned a report of the High Office for Oversight and Anticorruption (HOOAC) that 839 million afghanis had been missing and traders brought in commercial goods through the Torkham border crossing without paying taxes.

    On Monday, the anti-corruption body head, Azizullah Ludin, told reporters in Kabul that an investigation had been launched into the possible misappropriation of more than three billion afghanis at Torkham and Hairatan ports.

    “According to our investigation, 838 million afghanis have been unaccounted for at the Torkham customs office over the past two years,” Ludin said.

    But Khaleequllah, rejecting the allegation as baseless, said only a few hundred vehicles had entered the country through the border crossing without paying taxes. He added a delegation of ministers had visited them to investigate the claims that 23,000 vehicles had not paid taxes.

    After the investigation, the HOOAC in its second report said 1,400 vehicles had entered the country without paying the customs duty, according to Khaleequllah, who also disputed the second document and put the number of vehicles at 420 last year. Cases against the traders involved had been registered and they would be fined, he promised.

    ma/mud



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