Rajesh Rai | Phuentsholing

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) is currently investigating an alleged case of embezzlement at the Phuentsholing immigration office.

Several staff have been interrogated and three were detained by the commission.

Sources said that of the three officials detained, two were released and only one is still in detention.

Although Kuensel couldn’t confirm from the ACC or the immigration office, sources said the officials were suspected to have embezzled fund allocated for travel and daily allowances (TADA).

Sources said that a huge amount of false TADAs amounting to more than Nu 3 million (M) was misused.

The misuse dates back to the last three years.

Meanwhile, observers in Phuentsholing are not surprised that the case surfaced.

Many residents said such a case was bound to happen.

According to a source, of the three suspected individuals, an accountant used to work with Phuentsholing thromde before he was transferred to the immigration office.

“I heard he was not given much responsibility in the thromde because he was not good,” an official said, requesting anonymity. “But he was still transferred. That was wrong.”

Sources also said that the alleged misuse must have occurred due to the system called the electronic public expenditure management system (ePEMS).

“Unlike in the past, where funds were drawn using cheques with signatures of higher officials, one can easily transfer the money using ePEMS to his or her account,” a source said.

However, ePEMS has also been regarded as appropriate as any false monetary transfer leads to audit trails. When this system was not there, cases of forgeries were rampant.

Despite following up numerous times, Kuensel was not able to get confirmation and further information as the ACC refused to comment saying it’s too early to comment.