A Somali court has sentenced 4 Ministry of Health officials accused of stealing funds meant to combat the Covid-19 pandemic, HIV/AIDS and malaria, in another dramatic incident that is restoring public confidence. donors in Somalia which largely depends on external funding.

The Banadir Regional Court sentenced the Director General of the Ministry of Health, Abdullahi Hashi Ali, 61 years old, to 9 years in prison and as also ordered to pay a fine of $2,366. The Director of Administration and Finance at the Ministry of Health, Mohamud Bule Mohamud, 52 years old, was sentenced to 18 years in jail and was also ordered to pay a fine of $2,366.

The Head of Finance for Health Promotion Programme at the Ministry of Health, Mahdi Abshir Mohamed, 30 years old, was sentenced to 12 years in prison and was ordered to pay a fine of $2,366. In addition, the Head of Finance for Malaria and HIV/AIDS Programmes at the Ministry of Health, Bashir Abdi Nur, 34 years old, was sentenced to 3 years and was ordered to pay a fine of $1,183.

Evidence produced in court by the prosecution showed officials colluded to swindle millions of dollars destined to fight the COVID-19 pandemic with very little accountability. Officials were also found guilty of trading COVID-19 donations on the black market.

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