Ethiopian Police Arrest Commercial Bank Official and Telecom Boss for Corruption

Police have arrested the heads of an Ethiopian telecom company and financial institution on suspicion of corruption.

The suspects include Abrham Guade, deputy manager and head of sourcing and facility division of Ethio-Telecom as well as Ephrem Mekuria, head of communication of the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia (CBE).

Both suspects appeared in court on Thursday.

Abrham Guade was arrested on suspicion of corruption and causing loss to government revenue. Guade is accused of favoring a tour agency called Kereyou Tour and Travel to rent vehicles to Ethio Telecom with fake manufacturing date and out of the initial deal.

The telecom official deliberately allowed vehicles manufactured before 2000 to pass the inspection pretending they were manufactured in and after 2000.

In doing so, Ethio Telecom rented 67 vehicles from the agency, but police didn’t mention the amount of loss the illegal transaction caused the government.

Guade was arrested on December 27, 2016 and appeared at the second criminal bench of the Federal high court.

His lawyer requested the court to grant bail for his client as police had concluded his investigation.

However, police officials requested the court not to accept the appeal for bail, fearing that the suspect will hide documents if released.

The court adjourned the case to January 16, 2017.

Similarly, the head of communication of the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia, Epherem Mekuria, was detained on suspicion of corrupt practices he committed while serving as head of equipment supply and administration at the bank in 2012/13.

Despite a demand for 5,000 cheque parkers, he ordered the purchase of 500,000 markers without the consent of the committee. In doing so, he caused a loss of over 6.9 million birr (over $300,000) to the bank.

He appeared at the second criminal bench of the Federal high court.

The suspect argued that he had carried out the purchase based on the instruction he was given by management of the bank.

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Source: Fana Broadcasting Corporate

[Photo by Victor/CC BY 2.0]

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