Algeria takes action against corruption, questions tycoons
ALGIERS, Algeria (AP) — Algerian authorities are embarking on a “Clean Hands” campaign aimed at rooting out corruption that has been linked to top tycoons and current and former government officials.
Corruption is a major complaint of the masses of protesters who helped drive longtime leader Abdelaziz Bouteflika from office earlier this month, often chanting “You have ruined the country, gang of thieves!” New protests are scheduled for Friday.
Several influential Algerians have been questioned or arrested in recent days. Among them is Issad Rebrab, head of Algeria’s biggest private conglomerate Cevital, who is suspected of possible customs-related violations, according to prosecutors. Rebrab tweeted that he went in voluntarily for questioning.
Others targeted include a legislator accused of accepting bribes from a Chinese company, three brothers and Industry Ministry officials suspected of influence trading, and a former energy minister.