The State Security Prosecution said the statements made by former head of the Central Auditing Organisation (CAO) Hisham Geneina on wasted public funds amounting to EGP 600bn in 2015 due to state corruption are inaccurate.
A statement issued by the general prosecutor’s office on Saturday stated that Geneina’s statements exaggerate the amount of corruption, claiming that the former auditor stated during investigations that those numbers included other years as well, not just 2015, and for other reasons rather than just corruption.
An official at the Administrative Development Ministry, who was one of the witnesses summoned in the investigations, said the CAO is not primarily concerned with researching corruption in Egypt.
According to the official, these statements were also endorsed by members of the committee who conducted the CAO study. The study had several holes as it used inaccurate mathematical modules and included incompetent researchers, she added.
She referred to a joint study made by the ministry along with five other entities, including the CAO, on the corruption in Egypt between 2008 and 2012, where it stated that the definition of corruption is only limited to intentional crimes.
Geneina was referred to misdemeanour court following investigations and will stand trial on Tuesday as he faces charges of harming the economy and disrupting public order. The prosecution also ordered for the media gag order on investigations to continue until the trial’s start date.
On Thursday, the prosecution decided to release Geneina on bail after several days of investigations, but he refused, arguing that the charges against him are political and aim to counter his past achievements at the CAO.
Geneina’s lawyer said that the bail was paid by family members so that Geneina could visit his sick daughter in the hospital.
During his detention night until the trial date, Geneina reportedly refused to receive any visits.
Article 71 of the 2014 Constitution states that there should be no penalties in crimes related to publishing. However, the prosecution referred Geneina to trial based on Article 188 of the penal code which allows imprisonment for one year and/or paying a fine between EGP 5,000 and EGP 20,000 for publishing false news and rumours that aim to disrupt national security.