The Attorney General’s Office says SIGAR’s report on efforts for fighting big corruption cases is “baseless”.
AGO Labels SIGAR Report ‘Baseless’
The Attorney General’s Office (AGO) reacted to a recent report by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) on anti-corruption efforts which says the AGO has failed to do its job properly. The AGO says the report is “baseless and is far from reality”.
The SIGAR report, released on October 30, quotes the Department of Justice (DOJ) saying that Afghanistan Attorney General’s Office has been unable to prosecute powerful corrupt officials and influential figures who are involved in corruption and also has failed to prosecute big corruption cases.
SIGAR report states that “according to DOJ, the Afghan attorney general has a poor record of prosecuting powerful and influential corrupt actors. Additionally, the attorney general has failed to respond to repeated DOJ and U.S. Embassy appeals to prosecute stalled corruption cases. DOJ concludes that the attorney general’s performance is deficient, his accomplishments are lacking, and he fails to cooperate with the U.S. Embassy on anticorruption matters”.
The Attorney General’s Office spokesman Jamshid Rasuli said the report has been prepared with no consultations from the AGO and that its findings are just baseless.
“This report is completely baseless and far from reality and no professional ethic has been respected in this report,” said Rasuli.
In other part of the report, SIGAR quotes the Department of Justice, saying that AGO resisted to implement the State-Funded Case Management System (CMS) which is an online database for tracking criminal cases in Afghanistan saying that AGO’s resist show that it was afraid that corruption at AGO would disclose.
“AGO resistance to implementing the State-funded Case Management System (CMS) is another area of DOJ concern… According to DOJ, the attorney general has criticized CMS as a foreign-owned system when discussing the matter with largely Afghan government audiences,” read the report.
Rasuli meanwhile said if the AGO was against the use of the Case Management System, then the institution would not have formed teams for activating the system in all its offices. Rasuli said the AGO uses the system in criminal cases.
“In a letter in 2016 the Attorney General directed all prosecution offices in Kabul and provinces to use the system and on that time no office was formed for implementation of the system,” Rasuli said.
SIGAR report also says that Ministry of Interior’s inability in brining high government officials to court is a concern for the United States.
Interior Minister Wais Ahmad Barmak said most of SIGAR’s reports are controversial.
“SIGAR’s reports have always been controversial. Currently, we are engaged in arresting convicted people. We arrest only those who are convicted by the three courts of the country,” said Barmak.
SIGAR report criticizes the Anti-Corruption Criminal Justice Center over not prosecuting big corruption cases, but AGO says they are prosecuting dozens of such cases.