NAB Begins Inquiry Into ZTBL ‘Illegal’ Appointments

Business Recorder

The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has reportedly started an inquiry into “illegal” appointments in the Zarai Taraqiati Bank Limited (ZTBL), well-informed sources told Business Recorder. This process has begun on the basis of different applications submitted to the Supreme Court of Pakistan and NAB. Recently, NAB called applicants seeking details of appointments made without following prescribed rules and procedures. On May 25, 2019, the Executive Board of NAB had accorded approval of an inquiry against Syed Talat Mehmood, former President ZTBL on different counts including illegal appointments. Syed Talat Mehmood also served as head of Punjab Bank.

The gigantic task before the newly appointed President ZTBL, Shahbaz Jameel is expected to take cognizance of such appointments. The bank is without Board of Directors due to which all the affairs are on autopilot. Its balance sheets are not approved by the SECP which is imposing a fine on it. Information of “illegally” appointed officers with NAB, Rawalpindi, which is probing these recruitments, is as follows:

EVP (Operation), a former junior officer of Punjab Bank was appointed allegedly bypassing all rules and regulations/ criteria. His qualification is Executive MBA from Preston University, a diploma and not a degree. In this regard, HEC has already informed the Bank that only Kohat Campus of Preston University is registered. His CGPA is less than 2.5 which is not adequate to merit an appointment as Executive Director. The second case which is under probe in NAB is of Senior Vice President/ Zonal Chief Okara.

On March 2, 2015 he was appointed for SAM & Recovery but due to political influence he was posted as Zonal Chief, Okara after two months of his joining the bank. He is a third division and has a degree in political science which has no relevance to banking. According to the recruitment policy, no person shall be appointed who is a third division and has less than 2.5 CGPA. The other two ‘illegal’ appointments which have been brought into the notice of NAB included the appointment of an EVP.

NAB has also been informed that according to HR manual/rules and regulations no officer can hold acting charge for more than three months, whereas in ZTBL eight Senior Vice Presidents have been working as acting Executive Vice Presidents for the last two years and more than 15 Zonal Chiefs of Vice President rank have been working as acting Zonal Chief. According to ZTBL Board’s decision, the post of Zonal Chief should be at the level of Senior Vice President.

A large number of Senior Vice Presidents are sitting in the head office as well as in the field but the bank’s management appointed Vice Presidents as acting Director/Zonal Chiefs for the last two to four years. Bank’s Secretary General, Mian Wajid has also brought these ‘facts’ to the knowledge of Finance Ministry, Governor State Bank of Pakistan and Director General FIA.

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