January 19, 2021, 3:30 pm


2020-06-30 20:41:33 BdST

Kuwait army officer suspended over link with BD MP Papul

Major General Mazen Al Jarrah (left) & Deputy chief minister and interrior minister of Kuwait, Anas Al Saleh (right)

A major general of Kuwait has been suspended in connection with his alleged link with human trafficking and the visa trading business of Bangladesh lawmaker MD Shahidul Islam, reports the Arab Times on Tuesday.

Deputy chief minister and interrior minister of Kuwait, Anas Al Saleh issued a decree suspending Major General Mazen Al Jarrah, who was an assistant under secretary of the interior ministry.

Bangladesh independent lawmaker Islam named the army officer as one of the officials who took bribe from his company to allow his visa trading.

Kuwait interior minister told the parliament that none will be spared, if found guilty in illegal visa trading.

He also said that Kuwait is planning to heighten the level of punishment for illegal human trafficking and visa trading.

Mr Islam has been in jail since his arrest by the Prosecution Office of Kuwait four weeks ago.

The lawmaker was charged with money laundering and human trafficking.

Meanwhile, over the past two months, a number of government agencies have extended more than four government contracts of companies owned by Mohammad Shahid Islam triggering another scam, reports the Gulf News.

The sources pointed out that the contracts of government agencies were completed years ago, but some of them ended over the past two months, and were extended, in view of the authorities’ needs amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The total value of the four contracts is one million Kuwait dinars ($3.25 million), and most of them are related to workers employed as cleaners..

The sources said one of the government agencies, which manage vital facilities, sent a letter earlier this month to the central agency for public tenders to extend the contract with a Bangladeshi lawmaker, starting from July 1 to January 19, 2021, but the agency postponed the tenders for consideration.

They added there is another government agency with religious activity that has recently been assigned additional duties to a company of the Bangladeshi member of parliament, who was managing the cleaning of facilities for only one governorate in the original contract, and another governorate was added to his work, which raised the value of the contract to 720,000 dinars ($2.34 million), and it was also extended until the end of November 2020.

Islam, the accused, runs the Marafie Kuwaitia Group as managing director and CEO and has five million dinars in assets in Kuwait.

Sources revealed that he has four companies in Kuwait, working in general trade, contracting and cleaning of streets and buildings.

Two Kuwaiti lawmakers have been indicted, while three others are likely to be charged in connection with the case of the Bangladeshi member of parliament.

This comes against the backdrop of the Public Prosecution’s demands to toughen penalties for certain offences currently classified as misdemeanors and attract just a small fine.

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