Financial, admin issues cause rift between commerce secretary, TCP chairman

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ISLAMABAD: A tussle between the Commerce Secretary and Trading Cooperation of Pakistan (TCP) Chairman Mushtaq Ahmed Sheikh on the matter of financial and administrative irregularities in TCP has further intensified as the latter has asked the Minister for Commerce to refer the matter to the Establishment Division or the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) to conduct a fact-finding inquiry.

The Ministry of Commerce had directed the Executive Director Administration of TCP to immediately take into custody the Office of the chairman when the ministry of commerce rejected Mushtaq Ahmed Sheikh’s appeal to cancel his leave appeal.

Documents stated that the competent authority has taken a very serious view of the financial and administrative irregularities being committed in TCP and has directed Mushtaq Ahmed Sheikh, who is presently on leave. “His leave is not cancelled”, this may be communicated to the chairman TCP under intimation to this ministry.

The letter instructed that all files and all records must be secured and it will be the personal responsibility of the EDA to ensure the safety of these documents. All possible measures in this regard must be made certain by the Director administration under intimation to this ministry.

In addition to this, services of Rashed Ahmed Sheikh, nephew of the chairman TCP have been immediately surrendered to his parent department and his office must immediately be locked and all records in his possession are to be secured. His change is relinquished forthwith and he is not allowed to continue work or be present on TCP premises.

Officials close to the matter said that this is a typical example of bad governance and nepotism.

Furthermore, the letter instructed that no cheque or cash withdrawal would be done without the prior written approval of the ministry of commerce and the Joint Secretary (Administration) Dr Nazim Latif, is granted to look after the charge of TCP.

Executive Director Finance will prepare a statement showing expenditure on every expense and send the statement to the ministry of commerce within 48 hours, the ministry instructed.

The letter gave the further instructions to EDA and Finance and all officers of TCP who are directed to strictly ensure the compliance of the above instructions and in case of any resistance may report the matter to the office of the AS (admin and policy) for taking further actions.

In case of non compliance of these instructions, strict action shall be taken against the responsible officers, the letter concluded.

On the other hand, TCP’s chairman wrote a letter on the next day to the Minister for Commerce regarding unlawful/unethical attempts by Secretary Commerce Younus Dagha.

Pakistan Today approached the spokesperson of the commerce ministry and chairman TCP for comments but received no response.