Safadi to Testify over Zaitunay Bay, Voices Surprise over Hariri Statement
Ex-minister Mohammed Safadi on Sunday said he has requested to appear before the financial prosecutor to refute allegations about the Zaitunay Bay promenade and marina.
“After the issue of Zaitunay Bay was tackled in a false manner, and after the controversy, ambiguity in people’s minds, the launch of accusations and the claims about the presence of violations, Minister Mohammed Safadi took the initiative of calling Financial Prosecutor Ali Ibrahim and asked him to schedule a meeting,” Safadi’s office said.
“He urged him to launch a complete and comprehensive probe and to hold accountable any wrongdoer in order to wrap up the file once and for all,” the office added.
Safadi, who is a partner in the Zaitunay Bay project, has been accused of being involved in a venture that encroaches on public seaside property and of suspected money laundering and other violations.
Separately, Safadi’s office commented on a statement issued by the press office of caretaker Prime Minister Saad Hariri.
The office said Safadi was “surprised” by the statement which “divulged the details of negotiations” between him and Hariri, which he had wanted to remain confidential.
Describing the statement as an attempt at “political exploitation,” the office said Hariri did not keep promises made to Safadi to convince him to accept the nomination.
“This prompted me to declare my withdrawal and today I call on everyone to show prudence and realize that Lebanon is bigger than us all and that it is in impending danger,” Safadi said in the statement.