x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Embezzlement case against former minister and postal chief put on hold

Case of former labour minister and Emirates Post general manager accused of misdirecting Dh450 million is to be put on hold.

ABU DHABI // The case of a former labour minister and Emirates Post general manager accused of misdirecting Dh450 million should be put on hold, the Federal Supreme Court ruled yesterday.

The former minister, who was not identified, decided in 2005 that study certificates should be accredited through Emirates Post rather than the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

He also decided a Dh500 fee should be payable to the Labour ministry for each certificate.

However, prosecutors said that such a decision should have been preceded by a Cabinet decision under federal law, and that consequently, money was funnelled to the Labour ministry that it was not entitled to.

The general manager of Emirates Post was accused of acting in concert with the minister; four others are accused of helping them.

Both the former minister and former Emirates Post manager were appointed in a decree by the Supreme Federal Council, which means they can be tried in court only at the council's request.

The Federal Court of First Instance suspended the case and referred it to the Supreme Court to determine whether that court was specialised enough to look into such a case and whether such a trial would be constitutional.

The public prosecution appealed against that decision, saying the court could not call for an analysis of the constitution. But the Supreme Court upheld the decision.

The case will remain on hold until the Supreme Court rules on those issues.

hdajani@thenational.ae