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Senior interior, hajj ministries’ officials sent jail over graft

Senior interior, hajj ministries’ officials sent jail over graft

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Feb 20, 2018 - 21:19

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): The Appellant Court in capital Kabul on Tuesday sentenced four senior Ministry of Interior (MoI) and one Ministry of Religious Affairs official to different jail terms up to three years over corruption.

The primary court of the Anti-corruption Tribunal had already awarded similar punishment to the accused individuals.

The convicts included Col. Abdul Wasi Raufi, head of Projects Evaluation Committee at MoI, Brig. Gen. Taj Mohammad Farahwal, Brig. Gen. Mohammad Akbar Abdul Rahimzai and Col. Azad Khan. The four MoI officials were awarded 18 months in jail each over corruption.

Prosecutor Mohammad Qasim Bawari told the open trial that the accused officials had awarded a fuel supply contract of MoI to Fidelis Company without analyzing the company’s financial capability. 

He said the accused had provided assurance about the company’s financial healthinfo-icon after the company had withdrawn money from bank six months ago.

Bawari said head of the projects evaluation committee had received $150,000 in bribe from the company and other officials were his partners in the crime.

Defence lawyer for the accused rejected the allegations and said the MoI and its US advisors had selected four companies including Fidelis Company as eligible and his clients had told the ministry that the company did not provide them information about its financial condition.

Judge Anesa Rasouli convicted the four MoI officials over corruption and misuse of authority and awarded them one and a half years jail sentences.

Rasouli also sentenced former religious affairs director Abdul Rahman Ahmadzai to three years in jail over misuse of authority.

Prosecutor Hawa Babukarkhel said Mohammad Asif Momand, head of Shaheen Groups, had in written demanded construction of a business centre on a 7125 square metre area of the Hajjinfo-icon and Religious Affairs Department.

The company falsified formal orders of the first vice president and the Office of Administrative Affairs at the Presidential Palace in this regard and produced the fraud letter to the Hajj and Religious Affairs Ministry.

The prosecutor said Ahmadzai and Daeul Haq Abid, had processed the letter without going through its formal procedures.

The anti-corruption tribunal’s appellant court awarded Asif Momand and Daeul Haq Abid five years in jail each and Ahmadzai three years in jail over falsification and misuse of authority. Moman and Abdi did not appear before the court.

Judge Anesa Rasouli said the case of Abid and Momand could not be included in the proceedings of the appellant court because their cases did not go through the primary court.

nh/ma

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