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January 17, 2020

NAB to file references against Asif Ali Zardari, Nawaz Sharif, Yusuf Raza Gilani

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January 17, 2020

ISLAMABAD: The Executive Board (EB) of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on Thursday approved filing of references against ex-president Asif Ali Zardari and two ex-prime ministers Nawaz Sharif and Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani.

Filing of reference was also approved against Chief Executive of the Omni group Khawaja Anwar Majeed and Khawaja Abdul Ghani Majeed in the fake bank account scam. Nawaz Sharif and Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani were accused of handing the foreign gifted vehicles in violation of rules of Toshakhana that caused heavy losses to the national exchequer.

The NAB EB gave clean chit to Special Assistant to PM on Overseas Pakistanis Zulfiqar Ali Bukhari giving approval to close inquiry against him due to lack of evidence. The NAB EB meeting was chaired by Bureau’s Chairman Justice (retd) Javed Iqbal here on Thursday. The meeting gave approval of filing three references, initiation of nine inquiries and four investigations against the politicians, public office holders and bureaucrats.

The NAB accused that ex-president Asif Ali Zardari, ex-prime ministers Nawaz Sharif and Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani of distributing luxury gifted vehicles of Toshakhana. It may be mentioned here that the NAB had already questioned Nawaz Sharif and Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani about the vehicles a few months back. The NAB EB decided to file the corruption references against ex-ambassador Kamran Shafi and ex-High Commissioner of Pakistan to the United Kingdom Wajid Shamsul Hassan. Both were accused of violating rules that caused a loss of $27,000 and 28,000 pounds to the national exchequer.

The NAB EB also approved filing of corruption reference against HonorarySecretary State Bank of Pakistan’s Staff Cooperative Housing Society Abdullah Alvi and others for allegedly cheating the people at large and defrauding them of Rs7.8 million. It also approved holding four investigations against Adviser to Sindh Chief Minister on Prisons, Ijaz Jhakrani, Balochistan Minister for Health Rehmat Baloch, officials of Nishat Chunian Power Ltd, officials of the Nepra and Central Power Purchasing Agency, officials of Sindh Department of Health and Members of procurement Committee, Programme Manager Hepatitis Prevention and Control Programme of Sindh government.

The NAB EB also approved nine inquiries against administration of Safe City Project of Islamabad, officials and employees of the TEPA, LDA, ex-secretary Local Government Department of Sindh Muhammad Ramzan Awan and others, XEN Muhammad Ashiq and Project Director Muhammad Riaz of GEPCO, officials of the Bank of Khyber, ex-MNA Sardar Ashiq Hussain Gopang, Javed Iqbal, Patwari of Alipur Muzaffargarh, M/s Teaching Hospital, purchase officers and officials of DHQ Teaching Hospital D G Khan, pharmacy suppliers and others, ex-MPA Shaukat Basra from Haroonabad Bahawalnagar and owners and directors of M/s Abdullah Shah Ghazi Sugar Mills. The NAB EB sent an inquiry against officials of the Capital Development Authority for further legal proceedings to CDA.

It also approved sending inquiries against ex-director General Parks and Horticulture Authority, Lahore Shakeel Ahmed and other officials for further legal proceedings to Punjab chief secretary. The NAB board also approved sending of inquiries against NGOs -- SDPI, Fafen and others -- for further legal proceedings to the Ministry of Interior. It also sent inquiry against the officials of Fata Rural Programme Project, Directorate of Education to the concerned department for the departmental action.

The NAB’s Executive Board also sent investigations against Director M/s Canal View Peshawar Syed Arif Khan and others to Peshawar Development Authority for further legal proceedings. The NAB Executive Board approved closing of inquiries against the officials of Punjab Thermal Power Pvt Ltd, officials of Faisalabad Industrial Estate Development, Zulfiqar Bokhari and the administration of the Lahore Knowledge Park Company due to lack of evidence.

While addressing the meeting NAB Chairman Justice (retd) Javed Iqbal said that performance of bureau was lauded by prestigious national and international institutions and the recent report of World Economic Forum has lauded the awareness and prevention policy of NAB, which is an honour for the NAB. “Faith of NAB is corruption-free Pakistan,” he said. He said the overall conviction ratio of bureau is 70 percent and the NAB has filed 630 corruption cases in last 26 months in different accountability courts,” he said.

Iqbal said that the NAB has also recovered billion of rupees from 45 accused involved in Mudaraba/ Musharka scams. “Right now 1,275 corruption references having total value of Rs943 billion are pending in 25 accountability courts,” he said. He directed the director generals to take complaint verification, inquiries and investigations to logical conclusion by ensuring merit, transparency in light of concrete evidence as per law.