Road-building firm accused of bribing insurgents
PUL-I-ALAM (Pajhwok): The administrative chief for Charkh district in central Logar province on Tuesday accused a construction company of giving thousands of dollars to Taliban to let it implement a road.
Khalilullah Kamal said the company also offered work opportunities to insurgents on the ongoing 34-kilometre road project.
“We have investigated and confirmed that Bashir Ludin Construction Company provided cash and wages to Taliban in return for allowing construction work on the road,” he claimed.
The district chief said security officials could protect development projects and the company should not offer bribes to insurgents. The road contract is worth $20 million.
However, the official did not reveal how much amount had been paid to Taliban. Kamal demanded an extensive investigation to unearth more facts.
A tribal elder wishing to go unnamed said the construction company given $60,000 to the Taliban governor for Charkh. He claimed a number of Taliban fighters had been hired by the company on daily wage basis.
Meanwhile, acting Governor Niaz Mohammad Amiri said he would investigate the issue and the Bashir Ludin Construction Company would be treated in accordance with the law.
But Ludin, the company chief, rejected the allegation of bribing insurgents. He insisted the project was going ahead in line with contractual obligations.
Ludin confirmed road passes through Taliban strongholds and problems were resolved amicably through mediation by tribal elders.
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