ISLAMABAD: National Accountability Bureau (NAB) chairman (retd) Javed Iqbal has said that he will personally examine any complaints against any secretary and additional secretary as well as those against serving and retired bureaucrats.
Addressing federal secretaries in the cabinet division in Islamabad on Wednesday, he also refuted propaganda that the bureaucracy had stopped working due to fear of NAB. On review, he said, it became clear that cases against the bureaucracy were very few as compared to those against others.
Justice (retd) Iqbal said the bureaucracy is like the backbone of any country and has an important role to play in its progress. He said that he has served in various institutions including the top court and hence is aware of the issues faced by the bureaucracy.
“Not only is NAB the institute to end corruption but it is also a legal body that works according to the law and respects everyone’s dignity,” he said, while assuring that the anti-corruption watchdog believes in addressing the rightful concerns of the people according to the constitution and law. He added that elimination of corruption was a collective responsibility.
“We are enjoying coveted positions, which we owe to the country and we should pay back for this kindness,” he said, and stressed the need to work together for eliminating corruption.
On corruption cases, Iqbal remarked that those who could not afford transport now own prime real estate in Dubai. “Is it a crime to ask them about the source of their assets or to those who spent loans of 95 billion dollars,” he questioned.
He said bureaucrats should think ten times before taking any wrong action. He assured them that NAB would not call any bureaucrat who works accordance to the book.
“Governments come and go but the state would remain intact,” he said, and added that the government makes policy but implementation rests with bureaucracy. “The bureaucracy must not succumb to political pressure. It should make decisions sans caring about punishments or consequences. This would ensure their victory,” he maintained.
He also underscored the impartiality of his department as well as the bureaucracy, saying they do not belong to any group, faction, government or any political party but they have strong affiliations with Pakistan.
He also urged internal accountability, asking ministries and divisions to be proactive so that issues may not be forwarded to NAB. The chairman added that investigative system of NAB is being improved gradually, with major improvements made over the 13 months.