EUs Budgetary Control Committee Deplores NonRecovery Of Aid Embezzled by Algeria

Brussels – The European Parliament’s Budgetary Control Commission deplored that the EU’s anti-fraud office (OLAF) did not recommend the recovery of the embezzled aid sent to the population in the camps of Tindouf in south-western Algeria.In a draft report on the implementation of the general budget of the European Union for the 2013 financial year, the Budgetary Control Commission said it was “surprised by the fact that OLAF has not recommended that the Commission establish a recovery order on the basis of the financial damage caused to the Union budget with regard the humanitarian support” sent to the population in the The Polisario-run camps of Tindouf.The same Committee noted that a previous EU report (OF 2003/0526) recalled that the number of the population living in dire conditions in the camps “was considerably lower than indicated” by the Polisario and Algerian officials. In this regards, the Budgetary Control Committee “urges the Commission to adapt Union aid to the actual needs of the population concerned in order to put an end to all kinds of trafficking and to the embezzlement of humanitarian assistance.The OLAF recently disclosed a report on mass embezzlement of humanitarian aid by the Polisario and Algerian officials.The report deplored that only a small part of the aid finds its way to the Tindouf camps, while the rest is sold in foreign markets to enrich Algerian and Polisario officials.The report mentioned that the overestimation of the population of the camps as one of the reasons facilitating the embezzlement of humanitarian aid.The EU has been sending humanitarian aid to the camps since 1975 on the basis of numbers provided by Algerian authorities estimating the camps’ population at 155,000.Algeria and the Polisario continue to maintain the status-quo by refusing a census of the population in the camps by the UN.