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07.07.2019 Algeria

Bouteflika's ex-party chief detained in Algeria corruption probe

By AFP
Former head of Algeria's ex-ruling party Djamel Ould Abbes is suspected of corruption.  By RYAD KRAMDI (AFP/File)
JUL 7, 2019 ALGERIA
Former head of Algeria's ex-ruling party Djamel Ould Abbes is suspected of corruption. By RYAD KRAMDI (AFP/File)

The former head of ousted Algerian president Abdelaziz Bouteflika's party was placed in provisional detention Sunday on allegations including "squandering public money", state television said.

Djamel Ould Abbes is suspected of "squandering public funds, procuring a contract in violation of... regulations, abuse of office and forgery of public documents."

Ould Abbes, ex-chief of the National Liberation Front(FLN) and a former minister, was placed in preventative detention by the Supreme Court's investigating magistrate, state TV added.

Several prominent politicians and businessmen linked to Bouteflika have been detained or questioned in connection with corruption since the ailing president was forced to step down in the face of mass protests in early April.

Demonstrations have continued since then, as protesters demand that regime insiders leave office as a precursor to independent institutions being set up.

Ould Abbes' alleged transgressions date to his time as Minister of National Solidarity.

The public prosecutor launched proceedings against him after he voluntarily gave up his parliamentary immunity.

Ould Abbes held a succession of posts after Bouteflika took power in 1999.

From 2013, he was a member of the upper house of Algeria's parliament, the Council of the Nation, and he headed the ruling FLN party between 2016 and 2018.

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