Documents: Ghazanfar Family Received Funds Despite Owing Govt
Four companies belonging to the Ghazanfar family owe more than $52 million to the Ministry of Finance, but a bank check seen by TOLOnews shows that another $12 million was transferred to the account of Ghazanfar Naft at the start of the current year.
Afghan voice agency (AVA)_Previously, the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Defense had decided to suspend all fuel payments to Ghazanfar Naft until the company payed its previous debts.
According to the documents, these companies were responsible for transferring aid money from Japan to the Ministry of Finance from 2008 to 2012.
The four companies are Zmarai Sami, Ferdawsi Balkhi, Rana Khusraw, and Psarlai Sharafat, according to the documents.
Another document issued six years ago shows that fuel payments to the Ghazanfar company had been suspended on the order of President Ashraf Ghani until all debts were paid by the company.
“The discussions about the 900 million Afs--that money is part of the contract the company had with the Ministry of Defense, the money was for maintenance purposes, the money is for the company itself and was refunded,” said #Shamroz_Khan Masjidi, a spokesman for the Ministry of Finance.
Officials from Ghazanfar Naft and other companies have refrained from commenting.
“Six companies owe money from the money provided by Japan for fuel, the Ghazanfar company owes $162,000, the rest of the money is owed by five other companies,” said Farid Nawakht, head of the media department of the Ministry of Finance.
“It is the property of the national treasury and it should be spent the right way, no one is allowed to embezzle national assets based on their political relations,” said Mohammad Azim Kibrzani, a member of parliament.
“Every penny which is used in the name of the people of Afghanistan, if the penny is not used for the interests of Afghan people, then it will be national treason,” said Mohib Sharif, an #economist_in_Kabul.
Last year, the documents seen by TOLOnews showed that the Zmarai Sami Company owes $18 million, Ferdawsi Balkhi $14 million, Rana Khusraw owes $18 million and #Psarlai_Sharafat Company owes over $1.5 million to the Ministry of Finance of Afghanistan.
Japan’s aid is transferred from the Afghan government budget to private companies to help the private sector.
Mohammad Yusuf Ghazanfar, the head of the Ghazanfar company who died few months ago, was also a key supporter of Ghani in the presidential elections.
Experts said that the Ghazanfar Naft company managed to secure the contract for the production of a 50-megawatt power project despite its debts.