NAB increases scrutiny, seeks proper documentation for major agreements

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ISLAMABAD: The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has asked the central and provincial governments to submit documents worth more than $28 billion of agreements including LNG imports, power projects, motorways etc inked by them during the last four and half years.

Well-informed sources told Pakistan Today that all NAB Director Generals (DGs) have forwarded a 42 point questionnaire on the advice of NAB Chairman Justice retd Javed Iqbal to federal and provincial governments, seeking a reply within fifteen days and the provision of documents of different agreements worth more than $28 billion.

They said that NAB has decided to conduct scrutiny of documents of various contracts and purchase agreements. Similarly, the bureau (NAB) has decided to take serious actions against officials in case they fail to provide relevant required documents of the agreements.

Also, the concerned departments were reluctant to provide relevant documents for these agreements due to alleged irregularities and violations against the Public Procurement Regulatory Authority’s (PPRA) rules, said sources.

Though NAB is set to take serious actions against the officials over their failure in providing documents of various agreements, the federal and provincial governments are trying hard to find a middle ground to avoid NAB scrutiny, sources added.

The sources further told that NAB has sought record of all those agreements worth Rs5 crore or above which were inked during last four and half years including LNG purchase from Britain and European companies, metro bus project, power plants, motorways, construction, maintenance and decoration of government-owned buildings, OGDCL, Mari Petroleum, PPL, SNGPL, SSGCL, PSO, Universal Service Fund, PTA, NEPRA, PEMRA, OGRA State Life corporation etc from concerned federal and provincial governments.

It is relevant to mention here that though NAB’s approval prior to a formal signing of an agreement worth Rs5 crore or above is compulsory for departments or organisations as per section 33 B of the NAB Ordinance, however, the bureau, during the chairmanship of former chairman Qamar Zaman Chaudry had given exemptions to departments and organisations from seeking an approval from NAB prior to signing such agreements.

The present Chairman NAB Justice retd Javed Iqbal has advised NAB officers to work for changing the image of NAB. He is also all set to take actions during the next month against all those officers who have been facilitating the accused and have become reasons behind slow inquiries in different cases of corruption.

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