Thursday February 22, 2024

PAC recovered Rs300 billion in two years

November 25, 2020

ISLAMABAD: The Public Accounts Committee (PAC), in the last two years, recovered Rs300 billion that has been verified by the Auditor General of Pakistan (AGP).

The 15th Public Accounts Committee, constituted on December 20, 2018, was headed by Leader of Opposition Shehbaz Sharif as its chairman, who was substituted by MNA Rana Tanveer Hussain on November 28, 2019.

It inherited a backlog of seven years of Audit Reports, from 2010-11 to 2016-17, whereas three Audit Reports from 2017-18 to 2019-20 were referred to it recently. It constituted seven sub-committees for the Audit Reports and a sub-committee on monitoring and implementation.

The Audit Reports of the period of PML-N government are being examined by the sub-committees, headed by members not belonging to the PML-N. As many as 2,084 grants and 29,750 paras, including backlog of previous PACs, are pending for examination by the PAC for which PAC and its sub-committees have held 225 meetings and examined 4,716 paras. Out of these, 41 paras were referred to NAB, 24 to FIA and 1,318 paras were referred for pursuance at the Departmental Accounts Committee (DAC) level.

It also presented a special report adopted by the National Assembly for structural changes to improve the performance of PAC, compliance of directions of the honourable speaker to streamline it, reaffirming the audit jurisdiction of the Auditor General of Pakistan (AGP) relating to authorities or bodies established by, or under the control of, the federal government and chalking out of plans of holding the DACs meetings.

The recovery of Rs300 billion (Rs300,757.941 million) on the directions of PAC has also been verified by the AGP.

The PAC has also efficiently and effectively addressed the issues relating to the activation of 17 compliance cells of AGP throughout Pakistan; DACs meetings regularisation through repeated directives; letter to the prime minister and requiring secretaries establishment and cabinet to streamline it, adoption of 19 PAC reports through the National Assembly since 1985, the annual finance accounts/financial statement of the government for the year 2017-18 were discussed in the PAC for the second time in the history of PAC on 17-01-2020 (firstly in 1988-89 PAC Report), discontinuation of Neelum-Jhelum surcharge on electricity bills; removed Indian content, blocked porno, improved poor signals of cellular companies, ban on plastic bags was recommended to be imposed throughout the country; removal of one year restriction on new gas connections; posting transfers at same station beyond three years, Nadra was required for three years job rotation; the Ministry of Interior to reimburse Rs 650 to 30,600 candidates who could not appear in the written test before the National Testing Service (NTS) due to prior physical screening; redressal of the grievances of electricity

consumers in rural areas -- loadshedding, etc; simplification of the rules and reduction of discretionary powers of the FBR officers; details of recoveries made from the accused by NAB; report of construction of Sukkur-Multan Motorway; proper utilisation of Pakistan Boys Scouts Association’s land; follow up of various road infrastructure of NHA projects; making rules for appointment of director general in Aviation Division and on complaints of delay, raised issue of the pipelines project of Inter-State Gas Systems (ISGS) with Russia and directed the audit to conduct a performance audit of the ISGS Company within one and a half month and report.

According to the two-year PAC report, the PAC is committed to continuing to endeavor for effective parliamentary oversight through best utilisation of the available resources, simplifying results through recoveries, ensuring accountability of all the concerned through time-bound initiatives and by introducing culture that encourages performance at all levels.