JUN 25, 2018: The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) chairman, retired Justice Javed Iqbal, on Monday revealed that the anti-corruption watchdog had received threats that its headquarters would be blown up, DawnNewsTV reported.
He said the threats had been received after the bureau initiated investigations in mega corruption scandals, but did not specify a time period.
The chief of country’s top anti-corruption watchdog, who made the revelation during a visit to a bureau office in Lahore, asserted that NAB officials were not afraid and would continue to perform their duties with dedication.
“Our struggle against corruption and malpractices will continue,” he said.
The NAB chairman while addressing officers, where he made the revelation, said, “But the decision of life and death rests with Allah,” vowing that the war against corruption will continue without discrimination.
“Some people want the anti-graft body to arrest politicians so that they become political martyrs ahead of the elections,” NAB sources quoted Iqbal as saying and adding,
“But the NAB makes arrests on the basis merit in cases under investigation, not on anyone’s wishes,” he added.
He said that the anti-graft body “looks at cases, not the faces” and it had nothing to with the elections.
The NAB chief lamented that some people had made a habit of not appearing before the anti-graft body, despite summons.
Since Javed Iqbal took charge in October, NAB has filed 101 references out of 179 mega corruption cases registered with the watchdog.
The new chairman — immediately after taking office — had ordered the prosecution division of the bureau to finalize all 179 mega corruption investigations as soon as possible.
During a performance review meeting in April, it was revealed that investigations into 101 cases had been concluded, and that references had been filed in the respective accountability courts.
Earlier this month, the Supreme Court ordered NAB to probe irregularities in the construction of the 525MW combined cycle power plant at Nandipur, Gujranwala.
A three-judge Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar ordered the anti-corruption watchdog to examine corruption allegations referring — in the investigation process — to the findings of the one-man commission of former Justice Rehmat Hussain Jafri on the Nandipur project.
During the proceedings, the chief justice wondered how long the file related to the project would remain pending in the law ministry.
The power division secretary told the court that the project, which was initially estimated to cost Rs22 billion, eventually rose to Rs58bn due to delays.
The Justice Jafri commission was appointed by the Supreme Court in 2013 on a petition moved by Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz senior leader and then water and power minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif.
In its 94-page report, the commission had concluded that the national exchequer suffered a colossal loss of Rs113bn due to the negligence of the then federal law ministry during PPP-led government for delaying the approval — and finalizing the required documents — for the execution of the 950MW power generation projects of Nandipur and Chichon-Ki-Malian.