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Lodin to govt: Dissolve or back HOOAC

Lodin to govt: Dissolve or back HOOAC

Sep 09, 2012 - 19:49

KABULinfo-icon CITY (PANinfo-icon): The High Office of Oversight and Anti-Corruption (HOOAC) chief on Sunday asked the government to do away with the anti-graft body if it was unwilling to support it.

Azizullah Lodin complained despite having adequate evidence of corruption against government officials, his office could not expose or refer them to the Attorney General’s Office.

He told a news conference in Kabul the anti-corruption drive could succeed only when it was supported by government and the people. But he accused the government and justice departments of paying no heed to corruption cases.

"Powerful mafia has been active to discredit HOOAC, which can’t deal with corruption in the public sector in the absence of government’s support,'' the official claimed.

Lodin suggested the government should dissolve the office if did not want to back it, alleging Finance Minster Hazrat Omer Zakhilwal had repeatedly complained after his bank accounts were disclosed.

He said his department’s findings indicated huge misappropriation of money at the Hairatan port in northern Balkh province and at Torkham customs office in Nangarhar. “Some documents show $950,000 were deposited in bank accounts of Zakhilwal’s relatives.”

However, finance ministry spokesman Siddiqullah Tawhidi dismissed Lodin’s allegations as unfounded, saying that he had leveled such allegations in the past against the minister, but could not provide any evidence.

"Lodin might be having mental problems because he often accuses the finance minister of corruption, but would not provide any evidence,” he said, adding the AGO had been informed to investigate the charges.

About his own case at AGO regarding corruption, Lodin said corrupt officials and mafia groups were behind the conspiracy.

Last week, Wolesi Jirgainfo-icon defence affairs commission accused Lodin and acting defence minister Inayatullah Nazari of involvement in corruption.

The panel head, Humayun, said they had evidence of Lodin and Nazari receiving id="mce_marker"6 million in return for scrapping a id="mce_marker"08 million agreement on military uniforms. He said both officials had been referred to the AGO.



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