Egyptian officials stole $60 mln slated for wheat purchase: Prosecutor-general

08.08.2016

The Egyptian office of the prosecutor-general stated on Sunday that its ongoing investigation into alleged corruption surrounding local wheat procurement revealed that some EGP 533 million ($60 million) have been stolen by officials within the agriculture ministry in collusion with silo owners.

The prosecution says that the officials took government money slated for the buying of 222,000 tonnes of wheat from local farmers, but instead pocketed the cash while claiming that the purchase was made.

Neither the names of defendants nor the number of people involved have been revealed.

The prosecution said that it has ordered the defendants be detained, banned them from travelling and ordered their funds be frozen.

In June, the supply ministry said that the government had purchased up to 5 million tonnes of local wheat and paid farmers EGP 14 billion for this harvest season, which started in mid April.

The government had procured the local grain supplies at a subsidised price of around EGP 420 per ardeb (150 kg).

A parliamentary commission was formed in June and tasked with looking into allegations that local wheat procurement figures are inflated, indicating possible corruption.


ahram

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