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December 7, 2018

MPs must be punished even for minor crime, says governor


December 7, 2018

LAHORE: Punjab Governor Chaudhry Muhammad Sarwar has said that the politicians should be whiter than white as they are role models and people emulate them in societies.

He said the public representatives must be awarded exemplary punishments for their minor crimes as their demeanor was symbolic of collective character of the society. He expressed these views while addressing a ceremony to mark International Anti-corruption Day held here under the auspices of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB), Lahore at the Alhamra on Thursday.

The governor said the politicians were under greater onus to prove their integrity. The societies where the laws protected the mighty failed badly in the world, he added. Stressing the need of effective legislation against corruption, he said laws should not be made to protect the powerful, adding that the supremacy of law could only be ensured through indiscriminate administration of accountability to the haves and have-nots equally.

Ch Sarwar said the supremacy of law would be ensured the day the powerful would be held accountable before the weak. Sharing his experiences as a European parliamentarian, Punjab Governor said that members of the parliament were punished in minor cases to set an example while a common citizen could have easily been absolved of the charges in the same case.

Sarwar said the history had remembered only those who had done justice to their office while being in power and served humanity in a better way with their wealth and power. He said societies could not survive without a tangible system of accountability and observance of international anti-corruption day by the NAB was a step towards the ideal of creating public awareness about the menace of corruption. The governor lauded the awareness campaign by the NAB, adding that Prime Minister Imran Khan believed that accountability should be for all.

He said international anti-corruption day was a day of renewal of pledge to purge the country of the menace of corruption. Speaking on the occasion, DG NAB Lahore Saleem Shahzad said that NAB Lahore had increased the recovery by 336 percent from the corrupt, adding that NAB had recovered average Rs4 billion per annum under his tenure while it was Rs830 million per annum during the past 17 years. He said average 67 arrests were made by the NAB in the past 17 years while the number of arrests had been increased to 253 arrests per annum. Saleem Shahzad said that Rs50 billion recoveries from the corrupt were in the pipeline while the plea-bargain had proved to be a successful way of recovery from the corrupt. He said awareness campaign was part of NAB’s efforts to eradicate corruption from society.

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