Kazakhstan Minister of Agriculture Asylzhan Mamytbekov. Credit:tengrinews.kzKazakhstan Minister of Agriculture Asylzhan Mamytbekov is ready to resign in case Vice-Minister of Agriculture Muslim Umiryayeva, who has been arrested on bribe charges, is found guilty, tengrinews reports citing the Minister's personal Facebook page.
"In case the court finds Umiryayev guilty of a corruption offense, I'm ready to resign as soon as the guilty verdict is pronounced," the Minister of Agriculture of Kazakhstan Asylzhan Mamytbekov posted.
Besides, the Minister posted on his Facebook page that he doubted that Umiryayev was guilty. "Umiryayev has never been a member no the chairman of the government procurement commission during his career in the Agriculture Ministry, besides the Vice-Minister doesn’t supervise veterinary medicine or the Veterinary Control and Supervision Committee that held all the tenders on veterinary drugs. (...) All the members of the government procurement commission deny their involvement and any outside influence on the tenders conducted by Umiryayev. I don't really believe the he took any bribes and I believe that he could be involved in an extortion even less. I know him as a decent person and a man of principles. And he is a professional in his field. This may have been a provocation," Kazakhstan Minister of Agriculture Asylzhan Mamytbekov wrote.
Muslim Umiryayev, Vice-Minister of Agriculture of Kazakhstan, was arrested on December 21 in Astana and charged with getting a $100 thousand bribe from a businessman in exchange for awarding a public procurement contract.
Shortly after the arrest it was discovered that the intermediary, who supposedly passed the bribe to Umiryayev, has millions of US dollars in his bank accounts and had allegedly been acting as this kind of intermediary for some time.