Municipality staffers arrested with bribe

Kathmandu, February 4

The Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority arrested the Chief Administrative Officer of Chandragiri Municipality and his driver for their alleged involvement in bribery yesterday.

According to the anti-graft body, CAO Yubaraj Paudel and driver Sanchit Dulal were taken into custody from Balambu with bribe amount Rs 100,000 they received from a service seeker.

Joint Secretary Pradip Kumar Koirala, CIAA spokesperson, said Paudel had ordered his driver to receive the bribe from the service seeker as kickback for sanctioning amount for broadcasting public service announcement.

Last week, the CIAA had arrested Krishna Bahadur KC, chairperson of Junichande Rural Municipality in Jajarkot district with bribe of Rs 800,000, he had received from a service seeker for sanctioning budget for construction of a road. The anti-graft body said further investigation into the case was under way to file a charge-sheet against KC at the Special Court.

A recent study by the CIAA showed corruption was rampant at local levels where office-bearers and employees rarely provided service without bribe.

According to the ‘Study on Corruption at Local Levels’, the amount of bribe given to the concerned officials depended on the nature of service sought by a service seeker.

Most of the money accumulated by local level office-bearers come from contractors. They indulge in corruption from formulation to implementation of development plans.

The anti-graft body said corruption had been a defining feature of governance at local levels. The tendency of formulating politically motivated laws instead of considering people’s larger benefit has institutionalised corruption, according to the CIAA.