Local November 28, 2013 | 8:34 am

Agro Board chief says ex president’s officials sold import permits

Santo Domingo.- Agribusiness Board (JAD) president Osmar Benitez on Thursday affirmed that officials of previous administrations were selling permits to import agro products for as much as RD$300 million each, but evaded revealing the names.

“I want to clarify that it wasn’t just in the previous administrations of Leonel Fernandez, it goes back a long time,” Benitez said, and noted that president Danilo Medina "put a stop to it with the auctions of import permits."

The business leader said with the money saved the government has been able to build modern inspection units in various ports and airports, including Punta Cana’s.

He revealed that Eduardo Estrella, former presidential candidate and senior member of the pro-government PRSC party, asked him to help an associate who had bought import permits for millions of pesos, “but made worthless with the change of government. “Eduardo Estrella sent me a man who had spent 28 million pesos buying import permits, but became worthless with new administration taking office.”

Despite requests to name names by several of the journalists of Hoy Mismo Channel 9, Benitez opted to state the classic evasive term used by politicos, “don’t play those keys," coined by the late president Joaquin Balaguer.

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