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You are here News War U.S. Afghanistan auditor tells of free-for-all as subcontractors demand money they’re owed

U.S. Afghanistan auditor tells of free-for-all as subcontractors demand money they’re owed

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Afghan contractorsThe U.S. government’s primary auditing agency for Afghanistan has found that subcontractors on U.S.-funded projects in that country frequently aren’t paid, resulting in a litany of problems that include delayed and unfinished jobs, death threats to company workers and allegations of corruption among Afghan police and judicial officials.

Primary contractors are responsible for the failure, but because the nonpayments leave the impression that the U.S. government and coalition forces aren’t fulfilling their obligations, they undermine support for the coalition among the Afghan people and put at risk multimillion-dollar projects that are intended to promote stability, the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction said in a letter to U.S. diplomatic, defense and aid officials warning them of what it called “serious problems” of nonpayments.

The letter, which SIGAR also released publicly, said that one project funded by the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers to build police stations in northern Afghanistan was reduced in size after unpaid subcontractors walked away with equipment that belonged to the prime contractor.

"The prime contractor was removed from the project in May 2010, six months past the completion date with only an estimated 40 percent of the work completed," the letter said.

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