ISLAMABAD: The executive board of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on Thursday gave approval for initiation of another inquiry against Sindh Assembly Speaker Agha Siraj Durrani to investigate suspicious transactions from his bank accounts. The Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) leader is already in NAB custody, in a case pertaining to assets beyond known sources of income as well as allegations of embezzlement.
NAB Chairman Justice (retd) Javed Iqbal also approved a similar inquiry against Karachi Mayor Waseem Akhtar. The executive board also approved the filing of a corruption reference against Mehtab Ahmed Khan Abbasi, the former governor of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, for making illegal appointments in Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) during his time as special adviser to prime minister on aviation.
The corruption reference includes former secretary of aviation division Erfan Elahi, Muhammad Ali Tabba and others for illegally appointing Musharraf Rasool as the chairman of the state carrier and causing losses to the national exchequer. The appointment of Rasool had already been declared illegal by the apex court.
Approvals were also given for inquiries against former federal ministers Liaquat Ali Jatoi and Nawab Yousuf Talpur. A statement issued by the anti-graft watchdog stated that the two were under investigation over suspected transactions made from their bank accounts.
In total, the executive board gave approval of filing three references and two inquiries against various suspects, including a corruption reference against Kamran Ali Qureshi, the former chairman of the Capital Development Authority (CDA), and others over alleged abuse of authority.
Another reference will be initiated against Haji Gulzar Khan, the former health minister of Gilgit-Baltistan, Muhammad Zamurrad Khan, the former conservator in Gilgit Forest Department, Haji Nadeem Khan, Abdus Samad, Principal Medical Officer Muhammad Qasim and others. They have been accused of abuse of authority and causing Rs45.73 million in losses to the national kitty.
The anti-graft watchdog's board also accorded approval for conducting an inquiry against Ghulam Muhammad, the former secretary of Balochistan’s communication and works department, and another against officers of Sanghar district’s provincial highway division. An investigation will also be launched against Asghar Sheikh, the former director general of the Larkana Development Authority, and others.
It also approved closing inquiry against former Sindh minister Dost Muhammad Rahimo and others owing to a lack of evidence.
The NAB chairman also reiterated his department’s stance towards corruption, adding that it was pursuing a ‘zero tolerance policy’ to eliminate the menace. According to the statement, the bureau’s foremost priority was to bring the mega corruption cases to their logical conclusion as well as emphasizing the importance of across the board accountability.
He also urged the bureau’s staff to ensure that complaints are lodged, verified, investigated and taken to their logical conclusion within the stipulated timeframe. He directed NAB officers to perform their duties in accordance with law, transparency and by upholding merit.
(With additional input from APP)