MoI denies misspending police funds
KABUL (Pajhwok): The Ministry of Interior (MoI) on Tuesday rejected it had misspent funds meant for paying Afghan national police their salaries as alleged by the US Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) a day earlier.
SIGAR, a US watchdog responsible for monitoring reconstruction funds in Afghanistan, on Monday said it had raised serious concerns about corruption and mismanagement of the funds with the UNDP in letters sent to the agency’s administrator.
In his letters, Special Inspector General John F. Sopko wrote of a string of irregularities -- including tens of millions of dollars in unsupported charges made by the Afghan Ministry of Interior against LOTFA -- including $23.8 million in LOTFA funds diverted as a result of a "pension deduction" levied by the ministry.
In one letter, sent recently to American military commanders in Afghanistan, Sopko wrote that UNDP officials were not proactively addressing many of the problems plaguing LOTFA, including the dubious deductions taken from Afghan police salaries, evidence of fraud, and other concerns raised by donors regarding LOTFA's integrity.
In another set of letters, Sopko wrote to UNDP Administrator Helen Clark to express his concern over UNDP's failure to provide detailed information concerning steps being taken to ensure that LOTFA funds were not used to pay artificially high police salaries and "ghost employees."
Ministry of Interior spokesman Siddique Siddiqui rejected the allegations as unfounded and said no transaction or allocation of the funds had taken place out of the legal framework.
The leading oversight authority said the United States and other donor nations had contributed roughly $3.17 billion to the trust fund since 2002.
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