ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court on Wednesday sought an explanation from the Attorney General over the appointment of National Accountability Bureau (NAB) chief and also directed the head of the anti-graft body to submit a fresh report on the implementation of the NRO verdict with documentary evidence.
Meanwhile, the apex court also allowed Sardar Latif Khan Khosa to appear before it in the federation’s NRO review appeal.
The court further directed that the fresh report should also contain the list of prisoners who were released by the accountability courts when acting chairman of NAB was at the helm.
The court expressed dissatisfaction over the NAB reply submitted the day before yesterday over the implementation of its NRO judgment last year, saying that no trace of money in Swiss accounts had been found.
Prosecutor NAB Muhammad Akbar Tarar appeared before the court and read out the NAB report in the court stating that they have no whereabouts of the Swiss money.
“We had asked for indiscriminate implementation of the court’s judgment but nothing had been done so far,” Justice Javed Iqbal observed
“Every lawyer appeared in the court pledging to implement the court’s order but later on they appear helpless,” Justice Muahammad Sair Ali observed. The chief justice told Attorney-General Maulvi Anwarul Haq that the NAB report was not satisfactory.
“You have to give reason and pin-point us the responsible person so that we issue notice to him,” the chief justice asked the AG.
What was the qualification of Adnan Khwaja, Justice Ramday asked the AG. “Intermediate,” the AG replied. How a less qualified person could be appointed as MD OGDCL, the judge pursued.
The chief justice said that secretary establishment was responsible for not implementing the court’s order in letter and spirit. The court, while hearing the non-implementation of its judgment on NRO, asked Secretary Establishment Ismaiel Qurashi as to why Adnan Khwaja, being a NAB convict, was appointed as OGDCL managing director. Ismail Qureshi informed the court that Adnan Khwaja was appointed on the verbal orders of the prime minister. However, he was not aware of his conviction and soon he came to know the notification had been cancelled.
“This is not an excuse…you should have been aware of his conviction,” the chief justice remarked, adding: “You are responsible for not implementing the court’s order in letter and spirit and now no-one will come to your rescue because you signed the summary. Later, the chief justice directed him to produce all summaries sent to the prime minister for the appointment of Adnana A Khwaja as OGDCL chief. KK Agha, the additional attorney-general, pleaded that he was not aware of who issued notification of the reappointment of Ahman Riaz Sheikh. However, the court rejected his argument and issued a contempt of court notice to Additional Secretary Interior Ahsan Raja for defying the court orders.
NAB additional prosecutor general informed the court that nothing was available in the NAB headquarters except letters written by former AG Malik Qayyum to the Swiss authorities. Later, the AG assured the court that its judgment would be implemented in letter and spirit and action would be taken against those who are still sitting on key government posts.
The court adjourned the hearing till November 1.
In a related development, the Supreme Court on Wednesday allowed Sardar Latif Khan Khosa to appear before it in the review appeal of the federation against its verdict of December 16 last year, annulling the NRO.
The court, however, directed Khosa to get a certificate from the Pakistan Bar Council (PBC) to the effect that he is resuming legal practice and that he is no more an adviser to the prime minister, and inform the registrar’s office of the Supreme Court of this.
Sardar Latif Khosa and advocate-on-record Raja Abdul Ghafoor earlier presented the review appeal against rejection of the federation’s previous appeal by a three-member bench seeking adjournment of the case till the hiring of a new counsel by the government.
Justice Raja Fayyaz and Justice Javed Iqbal complained about unnecessary delays.
Later, the Chief Justice adjourned the hearing till November 1, subject to availability of the bench.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 14th, 2010.
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