News - Afghanistan
The Afghan Attorney General's office on Monday announced that three of the six Ministry of Urban Development Affairs (MoUDA) officials who face corruption charges have been brought back to Kabul after seeking refuge in remote Badakhshan province.
The prosecutors office has said the three men stand accused of major embezzlement and administrative corruption, so much so that this scandal is comparable to the infamous Kabul Bank case, which was brought to conclusion in late 2014.
"The three officials of the urban development ministry who sought refuge in Shighnan district of Badakhshan have been transferred to Kabul and investigations have been launched on the order of the Attorney General," spokesman Basir Aziz said.
Meanwhile, the High Office of Oversight and Anti-Corruption has already begun evaluating the assets of the six former officials under investigation. "The properties of these three individuals are registered with us, but there are some issues with the documents of two of the defendants and investigations have been started," the head of the office's public relations department, Abdul Qahar Farrukh Seyar, told the media on Monday.
The oversight office has reportedly refered another six or seven cases of official corruption within the Urban Development Ministry to law enforcement.
President Ashraf Ghani met with officials from the Urban Development Ministry on May 28, when he issued suspensions for the following individuals: Ahmad Shah Hemat, the head of the central housing department; Mohammad Amin, the head of the real estate and accommodations department; Ahmad Nawaz Bakhtyari, the head of the housing enterprise department; Gul Rahim Zyarmal, the head of planning and project manager for the 5th Macrorayan; Syed Amanullah Sadat, the head of the finance department; and Mohammad Amin Qane, the head of the apartments and rentals department.
The six officials stand accused of pocketing millions of dollars intended for development projects.