The policy of ‘accountability for everyone’ will continue, said National Accountability Bureau Chairperson Justice (r) Javed Iqbal while heading a meeting to review the performance of NAB Karachi. “We are determined to bring an absolute end to mega corruption cases for a corruption-free Pakistan,” he added.
According to a statement issued by the national anti-graft watchdog on Wednesday, NAB Karachi Director-General Brigadier (r) Farooq Naseer Awan spoke highly of his division’s performance since October 11, 2018 till date. He briefed the meeting that NAB Karachi filed corruption references against Dr Asim, former Sindh minister Sharjeel Inam Memon, incumbent Sindh Assembly Speaker Agha Siraj Durrani and former federal minister Kamran Michael, and the cases are under trial in the accountability courts.
The Karachi chief said that as of this month, his division had completed the process of confirming 346 complaints. Out of 93 inquiries, the references of 65 have been submitted before the courts while the remaining 28 will be filed after approval by the NAB chairperson, he added.
According to Brigadier (r) Awan, Karachi NAB arrested 159 suspects in 2019 while 32 suspects involved in corruption were arrested with the help of other divisions of NAB. He briefed the meeting that Karachi NAB collected Rs729,600,000 in plea bargains after the approval of the accountability courts in the fiscal year 2017-18, and over Rs3.42 billion in 2018-19. The meeting was informed that the conviction rate of NAB Karachi’s cases is 84 per cent.
Justice (r) Iqbal said that NAB had devised an effective anti-corruption strategy which was leading to satisfactory results. New measures had been introduced, including ensuring manageable workload, effective pursuance and confirmation of cases and 10-months’ time fixed for filing the reference in the court.
According to him, Transparency International, Mashal, and World Economic Forum have lauded NAB’s efforts towards eliminating corruption while a Gallup survey revealed that 59 per cent of the country’s population expressed trust in NAB.
The NAB chairperson informed the meeting that the national anti-graft watchdog has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with China to monitor China Pakistan Economic Corridor projects.
An MoU has also been signed with the Higher Education Commission (HEC) to raise awareness among youngsters on the dangers of corruption, he said.
Besides, the chairperson added, more than 50,000 character building societies have been established in colleges and universities of the country.
According to him, NAB has also devised a quantified grading system to further improve the performance of NAB headquarters and its regional bureaus. The new system assesses performance on annual and midterm basis.
He lauded the performance of Karachi NAB under the supervision of Brigadier (r) Awan.