Almost a month after the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) wrote to the Department of Local Governance (DLG) to suspend Goshing gup Sangay Lethro of Zhemgang, the department has not come to a decision.

The ACC, on June 12, wrote that the department is required to consider his service suspension as per section 176 (2) of the Anti-Corruption Act of Bhutan (ACAB) 2011 and the conclusion paragraph 6 and 7 of the Supreme Court directives issued vide its judgment number OM12-267 on July 17, 2013.

The commission stated that gup Sangay Lethro has been charged for criminal offence before the Panbang drungkhag court in connection with embezzlement of fund by the public servant.

However, the officiating director of DLG, Kado Zangpo, said that the department is referring the Local Government Act to see what the Act has to say on the suspension of the public servant.

“We will then consult the ministry and take a decision,” he said.

DLG officials say that Local Government Act specifies that every local government should have a disciplinary committee, which will take action against a member if there are any complaints.

It is, however, not clear if the committee could take actions against a member who is charged of a criminal offence.

The Office of the Attorney General (OAG), charged the gup for embezzling more than Nu 10.5M on June 4.

The gup, who is also the Zhemgang dzongkhag tshogdu chairperson, was charged for 27 counts of embezzlement, six counts of solicitation, nine counts of fraudulent hiring scheme and official misconduct.

Meanwhile, the ACC letter also stated that if the DLG decides not to suspend the gup, the office must ensure that he does not use public resources, including office time, to appear before the court.

Staff reporter