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PAN, July 17, 2014

Logar governor accused of selling stolen oil

When this reporter contacted Governor Niaz Mohammad Amiri over the telephone, he used threatening language instead of giving a proper answer.

The governor of central Logar province has allegedly sold 20,000 litres of fuel, which was stolen from an Afghan National Army (ANA)’s battalion and recovered by police, a government official said on Thursday.

The fuel had been stolen by ANA’s 7th battalion commander in Mohammad Agha district, Mohammad Hakim Tolo, on Saturday night.

Police recovered the oil before being sold, a government official told Pajhwok Afghan News. However, Governor Niaz Mohammad Amiri directed police to hand over the oil to his men.

“Following his orders, police handed over the oil to Naik Mohammad, a resident of Mohammad Agha district, and another person from Khoshi district,” the source said.

He said Governor Amiri sold the oil the night it reached the governor’s house, an issue also in the knowledge of the provincial National Directorate of Security and the police chief.

Niaz Mohammad Amiri, Logar governor
Niaz Mohammad Amiri, Logar governor. (Photo: PAN)

Logar deputy police chief Col. Abdul Wali Topan Tarakai confirmed to Pajhwok that the oil tanker stolen three days ago from the army had been recovered by police.

Tarakai said the oil had been stolen by an ANA commander and police handed it over to the governor’s house as directed by the governor.

“I don’t know where the oil is but the fact is that we have surrendered the captured oil tanker to the governor’s house,” the deputy police chief said.

However, commander Tolo rejected his involvement in the theft and said he had no information about it.

Logar police chief Brig. Gen. Abdul Hakim Ishaqzai also confirmed the stolen oil had been handed over to the governor’s house after recovered in the Mohammad Agha district.

He said the governor had distributed the oil to the Radio and Television of Afghanistan (RTA) station in Logar and a private radio “Zeenat” and some government departments.

“The oil has not been sold but distributed to a number of government departments according to their needs, particularly to the RTA station in Logar,” Ishaqzai said.

But Logar RTA chief Wazir Ahmad Hakimi and Zeenat Radio official Noorullah Stanikzai denied they had been delivered oil.

On the other hand, the governor’s spokesman, Din Mohammad Darwesh, said he was unaware of the issue. He recommended the governor should be asked in this regard.

When this reporter contacted Governor Niaz Mohammad Amiri over the telephone, he used threatening language instead of giving a proper answer.

“You are not a reporter but an adventurer, don’t call me again over this matter,” the governor told this reporter. As evidence, Pajhwok has recorded Amiri’s conversation.

Before talking to Amiri, his spokesman Darwesh asked Pajhwok Afghan News to avoid reporting the issue of oil theft because it could annoy the governor.

Previously, some Wolesi Jirga and Logar council members had accused the governor of corruption but he had rejected the allegations at the time.

Category: Corruption - Views: 5355