Law violated in contract-signing with Ferozi: Probe team
KABUL (Pajhowk): A fact-finding commission on Tuesday said government officials and departments had violated the law by releasing former Kabul Bank executive Khalilullah Ferozi from prison to sign a multimillion township contract with him.
The township project called Smart City is being constructed by Ferozi, who has been sentenced to jail and fined for stealing millions of dollars from the former Kabul Bank that almost collapsed some years back.
The contract-signing ceremony with Ferozi on November 11, 2015 was attended by president’s special representative for reforms and good governance Ahmad Zia Massoud, former presidential advisor Abdul Ali Mohammadi, Urban Development Minister Syed Sadaat Naderi and some parliament members.
Ferozi, who was also present at the inauguration ceremony, said he would invest $98 million in the project.
The township on 67 acres of land will be constructed by Nabizada Wardak Construction Company based on a contract between the Ministry of Urban Development and Ferozi, whose release from jail triggered widespread criticism. Ferozi is currently serving his jail sentence in a Kabul jail.
The increasing criticism prompted President Ashraf Ghani to suspend his legal advisor Abdul Ali Mohammadi.
Some lawmakers had claimed government officials who attended the project launch had received high amounts of bribe from Ferozi.
Ghani on November 18 appointed a delegation to investigate lapses in recovery of lost Kabul Bank money.
He issued a presidential decree on November 18 ordering a halt to work on the Smart City project.
The decree said the contract signed between the Ministry of Urban Development and the Kabul Bank defaulter was not credible and the lost money would be recovered through legal channels.
Ghulam Hussain Fakhri, a member of the fact-finding delegation, told reporters on Tuesday that the panel had shared its report with the Presidential Palace about a month ago.
“We approve that the motive behind the Smart City contract was to recover Kabul Bank loans, but unfortunately the responsible officials and government departments committed actions which were against the Constitution,” he said.
Fakhri said the delegation was tasked only to provide their opinion whether the contract-signing was performed in a legal or illegal way.
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