Commerce ministry proposes Khursheed Shah’s nephew name for NICL chief

ISLAMABAD: Ministry of Commerce (MoC) has proposed the name of Syed Khursheed Shah’s nephew Rafeo Bashir Shah for the slot of National Insurance Cooperation Limited (NICL) Chief Executive Officer (CEO).

The seat has become vacant after the resignation of CEO NICL Cap (retd) Jamil Akhtar.

Sources told this scribe that Commerce Ministry has forwarded the summary of three officers to Establishment Division for the appointment of NICL CEO on an interim basis. The proposed names are Commerce Division Joint Secretary Dr Nazim Latif, Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) Director General (DG) Rafeo Bashir Shah and Commerce Division DG Trade Policy Nauman Aslam.

“The Establishment Division may be authorised to appoint interim CEO NICL from the proposed panel under the section of 187(4) of the Companies Act, 2017 till the process for appointment of a regular CEO under section 187(1) of the Companies Act, 2017 is completed” document added.

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Sources told this scribe that TDAP DG Rafeo Bashir Shah is the nephew of the opposition leader in National Assembly Syed Khursheed Shah and he has experience within the insurance sector.  Furthermore, Nauman Aslam also has previous experience within the insurance sector. Prior to becoming DG Trade Policy, he served as a Commercial Councilor in Argentina while Joint Secretary Dr Nazim Latif worked as a Zone Head in NICL for almost six years.

It is worth mentioning here that to ensure a sound and prudent management within insurance companies, SECP had made it mandatory that insurance companies must be run by competent personnel with the adequate know-how of the insurance business.

Earlier, MoC had moved the summary for the Prime Minister proposing to terminate the contract of NICL CEO Jamil Akhtar. Documents stated that the ministry immediately forwards the summary to the cabinet and requested to terminate the contract of current CEO by paying three months’ salary in lieu therefore as per clause 7 or the terms and conditions of appointment of CEO NICL.

Sources added that as soon as the ministry sent the summary to the cabinet, CEO NICL Cap (retd) Jamil Akhtar contacted high ups of the ministry through Kamal Afsar, member of NICL board to defer the termination. Afsar requested to officials that Jamil Akhtar will submit his resignation soon and that the ministry should defer the agenda of CEO termination, sources further added.

Jamil Akhtar tendered resignation to save himself from illegal appointments case. Akhtar had appointed Col (retd) Mahmood Ahmad, Lt Col (retd) Zafar Iqbal, Abdul Waheed, Wahid Khan, Shahzad, Asad Ali Shiekh, Danish Khalid, Mir Ali Raza Alvi and Muhammad Salman Saddique on contract basis on grade 18 to 20 positions. However, these appointments had later been declared illegal in Federal Investigation Agency’s (FIA) inquiry. Upon the report submitted by the FIA, the ministry instructed the NICL administration to terminate above-mentioned officer immediately.

It is necessary to mention here that these officers in questions have taken a plea in court that the petitioners have been legally appointed under the rules and regulations of the NICL, thus directing both NICL and the ministry to abstain from taking adverse action.

Minister for Commerce and Textile Pervaiz Malik was totally unaware of NICL CEO summary when asked to comment. While talking to Pakistan Today, he said that I do not have knowledge of this summary, however, the ministry has recommended the names of those officers who have a through complete knowledge of insurance, he added.

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