REPORT: Funds for Ukraine Diverted to Fake Companies

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from The National Pulse:

Martyna Bohuslavets, Director of the Mezha Anti-Corruption Center, has raised alarms over the misappropriation of funds in Ukraine amidst the ongoing military conflict with Russia. Writing in Pravda, Bohuslavets reports that millions of dollars were “transferred to Kharkiv OVA to front companies of avatars.”

Bohuslavets claims that money intended for constructing military fortifications was instead siphoned off to the Kharkiv Regional Military Administration (Kharkiv OVA). In turn, Kharkiv OVA channeled the money into phantom companies. This issue has entered the spotlight just as Russian forces have penetrated the northern region of Ukraine.

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With Russia’s offensive hitting towns and villages, the absence of the intended fortifications, amounting to 7 billion hryvnias (~$176.5), is becoming glaringly apparent.

Adding to concerns is a BBC report featuring Denys Yaroslavskyi, a regional Ukrainian commander in Kharkiv, lamenting a serious “betrayal” concerning the missing first line of defense. He alleged that promised minefields were non-existent, making it easy for the Russians to walk in. Such acts of negligence, or corruption, as he labeled them, have led to unnecessary loss of lives. “Either it was an act of negligence, or corruption. It wasn’t a failure. It was a betrayal,” Yaroslavskyi said.

News of the corruption is likely to raise questions in the U.S. about the wisdom of continued aid to Ukraine. In a March report, the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) expressed concerns over the lack of supervision of resources headed to Ukraine. It highlighted the Pentagon’s insufficiencies in tracking deliveries of defense materials to Ukraine.

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