CAIRO: Press reports on an official complaint filed against former Lawyers’ Syndicate chairman Sameh Ashour accusing him of allegedly seizing LE 10 million during his term are untrue, board member Mohamed Abdel-Ghaffar said Thursday.
Abdel-Ghaffar told Daily News Egypt that on July 1 he had filed a complaint before the Public Prosecutor, not the Public Funds Prosecution as reported, against a number of syndicate employees accusing them of committing financial irregularities and appropriating syndicate money based on an internal investigation conducted over 70 days.
“The complaint has nothing to do with Ashour [himself] as … these employees may have worked under [any] chairman,” he explained.
“I don’t know where [these journalists] got such information.”
According to Abdel-Ghaffar, the amount of money in question is LE 5 million, not more than LE 10 million as reported.
“The employees used the money in their possession without offering [logical] accounts,” he noted.
“If a report like this was filed, I would quit working as a lawyer… All these are wrong claims,” Abdel-Ghaffar said.
On his part, Ashour declined to comment on the published reports, only saying that the charges were “fallacious.”
Press reports said Thursday that a complaint had been filed against Ashour and a number of his aides based on an internal investigation conducted by a syndicate committee.
The reports added that internal investigations revealed that the alleged theft was carried out under several covers such as expenses paid for the permanent bureau of the Arab Lawyers Union, the syndicate phone switches, the executive office of the Freedoms Committee and medical treatment for syndicate members.
However, the Lawyers against Corruption movement had frequently accused Ashour of being involved in several corruption cases at the Bar Association.
The movement said in a statement last year that “the syndicate never witnessed an era worse than that of Ashour’s,” which was proven by the reports produced by the Central Auditing Organization of “irregularities” committed by him during in 2004-2005.