Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Kleptocrat Benazir

Jemima Khan Goldsmith(ex-wife of Pakistan skipper,Imran Khan)has no love lost with Benazir Bhutto,ex-PM of Pakistan, who has, with a flourish now returned-after her self imposed exile- to take up cudgels from where she left off.
Jemima has written a nice piece worth reading about Benazir knowing her probably better than others as her ex-husband's rival.

She preferred instead to kowtow to the mullahs in order to cling to power, forming an expedient alliance with Pakistan's Religious Coalition Party and leaving Pakistan's women as powerless as she found them.

Make no mistake, Benazir may look the part, but she's as ruthless and conniving as they come--a kleptocrat in a Hermes headscarf.

Benazir is said to have stashed millions of her ill-gotten wealth in Swiss Banks and offshore accounts. Inquiries have so far found that Zardari, Benazir's equally corrupt husband,went on a shopping spree in the mid-1990s, purchasing among other things a $4 million, 355-acre estate south of London.Officials leading the inquiry in Pakistan say that the $100 million they have identified so far is only a small part of a much larger windfall from corrupt activities. They maintain that an inquiry begun in Islamabad immediately after Bhutto's dismissal in 1996 found evidence that her family and associates generated more than $1.5 billion in illicit profits through kickbacks in virtually every sphere of government activity -- from rice deals, to the sell-off of government land, even rake-offs from government welfare schemes.
In the largest single payment investigators have discovered, a gold bullion dealer in the Middle East was shown to have deposited at least $10 million into one of Zardari's accounts after the Bhutto government gave him a monopoly on gold imports that sustained Pakistan's jewelry industry. The money was deposited into a Citibank account in the United Arab Emirate of Dubai.

Among the string of big ticket real estate that she owns are Rockwood, a 355-acre estate south of London, and a $2.5 million country manor in Normandy.

Benazir, in her third run in Pak politics will be a must-watch on power politics and with an enhanced chaotic alliance with Musharraf, a gloom and doom scenario is all set to unfold.


NeoAuteur said...

Her family background makes her practically royalty. I guess royalty has a different standard of living. :)

Eternalsoul said...

Living off others' money is more like it!