Afghanistan to open a specialized anti-corruption justice center
Amid hope and desperation over the government's previous counter-corruption policies, the presidential palace announced that the Specialized Anti-Corruption Justice Center is to open within a week. The center will investigate corruption at the highest levels of government. This will include ministers, governors, deputy ministers and other high ranking officials alleged to be involved in corrupt practices. Afghanistan's Attorney General Farid Hamidi will be the chairman of the center. Hamidi met with Afghan president Ashraf Ghani and CEO Abdullah Abdullah on Thursday 23 of June. They discussed the ongoing efforts to make the center operational. "The Center will process all cases related to high ranking officials including ministers, governors, deputies and previous institutions that failed in combating corruption," deputy presidential spokesman Dawa Khan Menapal said. The Center will be mandated to act swiftly whenever and where-ever corruption is suspected. It will have the authority to by-pass bureaucracy. Its officials will then probe and finalize cases and also conclude legal and judicial proceedings without delay. The Center is to have its own police investigators, prosecutors and judges. "There is a need for an environment which prevents illegal attempts at influencing the attorney general or the chief justice. Where such an environment exists, as in such centers elsewhere in the world, it will prove to be effective in Afghanistan too," said Abdul Aziz Aryayee, head of The Independent Joint Anti-Corruption Monitoring and Evaluation Committee.