The ministers said that consultations should be held on government’s stance before legislation.

ISLAMABAD (Dunya News) – Expressing their reservations to Prime Minister Imran Khan, the federal ministers said that consultations should have been held on the NAB Amendment Ordinance.

According to sources, the reservations were expressed during a meeting presided over by PM Imran Khan.

During the meeting, the ministers said that consultations should be held on government’s stance before legislation, while discussions should be held in a cabinet meeting before any legislation.

The ministers further said that such legislation should be implemented after unanimous opinion and consultation, adding that the consultations before the legislature will strengthen the government s position.

“A media strategy should also be devised before any legislation,” the ministers said.

Sources said that the prime minister after listening to the complaints of the ministers, issued clear directions to take the cabinet in confidence before legislation in future.


President Alvi signs ordinance


On December 27, Federal Cabinet approved the circulation summary, and issued the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) Amendment Ordinance 2019 after President Dr Arif Alvi signed it.

According to the proposed NAB ordinance, the anti-graft watchdog will no longer be allowed to take action against government employees and Bureau will not seize property of government officials without the orders of the court.

If the accountability watchdog cannot complete an investigation against a suspect within three months, the accused will be entitled to bail. In addition, NAB will now only be able to proceed in corruption cases of Rs500 million and more.

The anti-graft agency’s jurisdiction over matters relating to tax, stock exchange and IPOs has been curtailed. The Federal Bureau of Investigation, Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan and building control authorities will be the sole authorities tasked to act on all such matters.

No action will be launched against government employees in case of departmental deficiencies, as per the proposed ordinance.


NAB Ordinance


According to the proposed NAB ordinance, the anti-graft watchdog will no longer be allowed to take action against government employees and Bureau will not seize property of government officials without the orders of the court.

If the accountability watchdog cannot complete an investigation against a suspect within three months, the accused will be entitled to bail. In addition, NAB will now only be able to proceed in corruption cases of Rs500 million and more.

The anti-graft agency’s jurisdiction over matters relating to tax, stock exchange and IPOs has been curtailed. The Federal Bureau of Investigation, Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan and building control authorities will be the sole authorities tasked to act on all such matters.

According to the proposed NAB ordinance, the anti-graft watchdog will no longer be allowed to take action against government employees and the bureau will not seize property of government officials without the orders of the court. No action will be launched against government employees in case of departmental deficiencies, as per the proposed ordinance.


Politicians to benefit from new ordinance


The new NAB Amendment Ordinance 2019 has proven to been a relaxation for the politicians and other officials as mega corruption cases are likely to be transferred to other institutions from the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) and the accountability courts.

According to sources, several people including Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President Shehbaz Sharif and his son, Hamza Shahbaz, along with Khawaja Saad Rafique, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Abdul Aleem Khan and Sibtain Khan will have a sigh of relief from the new ordinance.

Furthermore, former president Asif Ali Zardari, former premier Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and Yousaf Raza Gillani will also benefit from it. Zardari s fake bank accounts case is also likely to be ineffective due to the new anti-graft amendment.

Former principal secretary to PM Fawad Hassan Fawad, former Development Authority (LDA) director general Ahad Khan Cheema, senior bureaucrat Waseem Ajmal and other important bureaucrats will also cash in on the NAB Amendment Ordinance 2019.

It was futher said that former chairman of Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB) Asif Hashmi is also likely to benefit from the new NAB ordinance in financial irregularities’ case. Ashiana Iqbal scandal, Clean Water corruption case, Paragon reference, Park View Society and Chiniot corruption cases are likely to move from the AC to other courts.

Moreover, cases of Lahore Parking Company, Lahore Waste Management Company (LWMC) and Rawalpindi Waste Management Company (RWMC) are also likely to be transferred as 56 corruption cases will also be transferred.

It was reported that more than 60 references are likely to be effected by the new ordinance. The cases will be transferred from the NAB and accountability courts to the FIA, Customs, Excise and Anti-Smuggling Courts.