President Ghani has revoked an order issued a year ago to purchase real estate for the Afghan consulate in Istanbul, Turkey.
A document seen by TOLOnews shows that Ghani’s former adviser Humayoun Qayoumi requested that the president dispatch a three-member delegation to Turkey to buy the asset.
Qayoumi reportedly suggested one official from the Ministry of Urban Development and Housing, one from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and one on his behalf to go to Turkey, at the request of Zekirya Barakzai, the Afghan Consul General in Istanbul.
According to the document, the president approved the request. But the contract for the purchase of the property has now been revoked by the president a year later.
“The deal was revoked yesterday (Tuesday) because of its legal and technical shortcomings,” said Geran Hewad, a spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
But according to a document that was issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to the Ministry of Finance last year, all steps were taken for the purchase of an asset in Istanbul worth 3.9 million dollars. But sources have told TOLOnews that the cost of the real estate was estimated to be $1.5 million.
Sources also said that the government revoked the deal after the real cost of the deal was publicized.
“The involvement of unrelated people in this process, and the revocation of this process after one year, raises a lot of questions. There is a need for an investigation from those involved in the process,” said Sayed Ekram Afzali, the head of Integrity Watch Afghanistan.
Sources, meanwhile, see the role of Zekirya Barakzai, Afghanistan’s consul general in Istanbul, Turkey, who determined the purchase of the asset, as important. However, Barakzai rejects any involvement in the purchase of the asset.
Barakzai said that he was rewarded for undertaking the process on the order of the president and Qayoumi.
“They in a way tried to portray that they bought the asset at a higher price–this should be referred to the legal and judicial institutions,” said Mir Haidar Afzali, a member of parliament.