Friday,22 February, 2019
Current issue | Issue 1379, (1 -7 February 2018)
Friday,22 February, 2019
Issue 1379, (1 -7 February 2018)

Ahram Weekly

Conflicting scenarios

Egypt’s former top auditor was injured last week. His lawyer and the Interior Ministry have contradicting accounts of the incident, reports Ahmed Morsy

Hisham Geneina
Hisham Geneina

Hisham Geneina, Egypt’s former top auditor and an advisor to a presidential hopeful suffered serious injuries to his face and leg on Saturday during what the Interior Ministry stated to be “a street fight”and his lawyer described as a kidnapping attempt.

Geneina, one of two top advisors for former military chief of staff Lieutenant General Sami Anan’s presidential bid, had a fight with three men after hitting one of them with his car in New Cairo District on Wednesday morning. 

Geneina, accompanied by his house janitor Ramadan Ibrahim, had just left his home in New Cairo’s Fifth Settlement where he hit with his car a man called Al-Sayed Mahmoud Khalaf while he was crossing the street, according to the ministry. “Khalaf, who was accompanied by two others, clashed with Geneina and Ibrahim who hit one of Khalaf’s accompanies with a metal stick, while the other side hit Geneina with a knife,” the statement said.

“Geneina was injured, and has several abrasions on his hands and feet... and the other three people, who accused Geneina’s wife and daughter of assaulting them, were injured with leg fractures and scalp wounds. They all were treated at New Cairo Hospital,” the statement noted, adding that the piece of iron that was used as a weapon by Geneina’s guard was seized. The police referred the incident to the prosecution for investigation.

On the other hand, Geneina’s lawyer and family members denied the Interior Ministry’s account saying the incident was “a failed kidnapping and assassination attempt”.

Geneina’s lawyer Taha Ali said that “three armed thugs attacked Geneina” when he was on his way to attend a court session in which Geneina appealed against the dismissal decision of his post as the chairman of the Central Auditing Authority.

“The attackers who were armed with knives and sticks jumped out of two cars after blocking the path of Geneina’s car. They tried to pull him out of his car to force him into one of their cars when passers-by and members of his family rushed to his rescue and a brawl ensued,” the lawyer said, stressing that Geneina was alone when the attack first took place.

Geneina, who could not be immediately questioned because of his condition, remained under observation in hospital where he was guarded by police since one of the three attackers filed a counter-complaint accusing him of assault. 

Geneina, also a former judge and police officer, was dismissed from his post as the head of the state Central Auditing Authority in March 2016 on the back of accusations of misleading the public by his remarks on corruption.

In December 2015, Geneina said that government corruption had cost the country billions of dollars. In a press interview, he said that about LE600 billion in state funds had gone missing in 2015, according to a 400-page investigative report conducted by his team. Geneina, who was appointed by former Muslim Brotherhood president Mohamed Morsi to his post in September 2012, later said he was misquoted and that his remarks referred to the last four-year period. 

He has been referred to criminal court for his remarks, while a misdemeanour court endorsed in December a first-degree one-year suspended prison sentence for him for “disseminating false news”.

Two weeks ago it was revealed that Geneina is part of the team of Anan’s presidential bid. Anan’s presidential campaign was halted following his arrest last week over charges of breaking military codes by running for a political post without obtaining the necessary permissions, incitement against the army and forgery of election documents.  

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