Egyptian MP and member of parliament’s planning and budget committee Talaat Khalil said that a committee will be formed to investigate accusations by MP Mohamed Anwar El-Sadat that parliament purchased three cars worth EGP 18 million in excess of the budget allotted for such purchases.
The committee is expected to prepare a report on the matter within 10 days, MP Hussein Eissa, the head of the parliament's committee for planning and budget, said in TV statements.
MP El-Sadat told Ahram Online that parliament’s purchasing of the cars does not go in line with the government's calls for austerity due to the current economic situation.
El-Sadat said that parliament already owns enough cars fitted with the latest security equipment, and questioned the need to spend such a large amount of money to buy new cars.
The MP said that he has the documents that prove the cars were purchased with funds that were not included in the parliament's original budget.
“These cars were purchased with knowledge of the speaker, as MPs our primary duty is to monitor the country's public budget and finances, so how did we not monitor the house budget?” El-Sadat said.
However, MP Khalil said that the parliament's overall budget has EGP 22 million allocated for transportation, and that parliament has the right to expand this budget to buy new cars.
MP Eissa described El-Sadat's accusations as “inaccurate,” stressing that the House did not approve any additional funds to finance the purchase of the cars.
The budget’s fixed assets provision gives the speaker the right to purchase the “necessary utilities” without going outside the budget, Eissa said in TV statements in response to El-Sadat.
El-Sadat assured that he is willing to present an official inquiry before the House if parliament officials do not respond to his accusations.
“We have to set an example for the people as their representatives that we are carrying out the duties with which they have entrusted us,” El-Sadat said.
El-Sadat denied reports that he has been referred to parliament's disciplinary committee over his accusations, saying that these reports aim to distract from the issue.