ISLAMABAD: After keeping the matter pending for weeks, the Prime Minister’s Office has returned the summary on the appointment of NAB prosecutor-general to the law ministry, seeking comments from Law Minister Chaudhry Mehmood Bashir Virk.
Sources in the law ministry confirmed that the summary contained five names for appointment to the key post that has been lying vacant since November last year.
Chairman NAB Justice (retd) Javed Iqbal had suggested the names of Mudhasir Khalid Abbasi, Shah Khawar, Syed Asghar Haider, Fasihul Mulk and Nasir Saeed Sheikh.
Last month, the law ministry had raised objections to all nominees and forwarded the summary to the PM’s Office.
The sources suggested that Virk, the new law minister, also met with top hierarchy of the NAB on Friday to finalise the appointment of NAB prosecutor general.
It is also learnt that some elements in the government support the idea of appointing former judge of the Lahore High Court, Syed Asghar Haider, as prosecutor general.
However, a senior official said that new names might also be considered in this regard. It is expected that the law ministry will submit a fresh summary and the appointment will be notified early next week.
The official agreed that a final approval would be given by former prime minister Nawaz Sharif.
On Monday, the federal government had, through the attorney general, given an undertaking before a two-judge bench of the Supreme Court, headed by Justice Gulzar Ahmad, that the appointment of NAB’s new prosecutor-general would be finalised within a week.
Meanwhile, the NAB once again failed to file a review petition against the Supreme Court’s order on the dismissal of its plea for reopening the 17-year-old Hudabiya Paper Mills case – this time because the required fees had not been deposited in the bank due to bank holiday.
A senior NAB official said that the review petition was handed over to the advocate-on-record for filing, but the mandatory fees of Rs10,000 could not be deposited. Now the review petition will be filed tomorrow (Monday).
The petition, spanning more than 30 pages, was drafted by special prosecutor Imranul Haq.
It is learnt that the NAB mainly contended that the views of the larger bench in the Panama Papers case and the three-judge bench that dismissed the appeal were conflicting.
According to another senior official, NAB will not immediately call for the formation of a larger bench in this regard.