KARACHI: It took almost a hundred years for the East India Company to establish its rule over the subcontinent. The modern day colonisation process is simpler and far more efficient. Plant your own nationals at key decision-making positions of a country and let them do the rest. Pakistan is perhaps, the best example of how a country can be taken over without a formal process of invasion.
We are now rapidly discovering (rather late in the day) that scores of our top politicians, bureaucrats, governors and other individuals holding key positions are in fact foreign nationals. The cases of Rehman Malik and Farahnaz Ispahani are just the tip of a huge iceberg. More names have now begun to appear in the press including the federal finance minister and the Punjab finance minister.
Interestingly, while all this may seem new for ordinary Pakistanis, the government always knew of this fact and was in fact hiding and telling lies about it. I myself had applied seven times to the government, under the Freedom of Information Ordinance, to release the dual nationality of members of parliament but my request was always denied.
Is it enough to disqualify or remove these individuals from their jobs? Did they not knowingly violate the law of the land? Should they not deserve prison sentences for their fraudulent acts such as hiding their other nationality? Should we not question our sleepy justice system for doing too little, too late? Shouldn’t all politicians, governors, judges and civil and military bureaucrats be investigated on this issue?
A nation that regularly test-fires nuclear-capable missiles should at least be able to figure out the foreigners among its ranks. This can be done quite easily by examining the passports on which these individuals travel or by filing requests under freedom of information law of the UK, US or Canada.
Published In The Express Tribune, June 6th, 2012.
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