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ISLAMABAD: The Power Division is said to be weighing different options to give additional charge of Managing Director National Transmission and Despatch Company (NTDC) to an officer from its own hierarchy like in the past, well-informed sources told Business Recorder.

The recently appointed Managing Director, NTDC, Engineer Azaz Ahmad resigned from the position just after three months due to undue interference of the Board in the internal affairs of organisation and family issues. He had assumed charge on August 4, 2021 and his resignation was accepted by the Board from November 3, 2021.

According to the notification, the Board of Directors of NTDC in its 209th meeting held on November 03, 2021 against special agenda unanimously resolved and approved the acceptance of resignation tendered by Azaz Ahmad, MD NTDC with immediate effect.

The Board also approved to waive off one-month notice period after the deduction of leave balance as per employment agreement on compassionate ground on account of certain family health issues.

The notification further states that the Employment/ Service Agreement executed between NTDC and Azaz Ahmad, MD NTDC will stand ceased from November 03, 2021.

According to sources, the outgoing NTDC Chief was unhappy with the undue interference of BoD, headed by Naveed Ismail. The Board members' entitled to Rs50,000 for each meeting, hold frequent meetings, sometimes three meetings in a week and issues directions relating to the organization's internal affairs, in violation of their mandate.

Ahmad who spent a long time in Canada and was hired on $15,000 per month salary, was unhappy with this practice and he raised this issue in internal meetings at other fora.

The sources said he also refused to issue letter of Commercial Operation Date (COD) of Matiari-Lahore transmission project 660kV High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) transmission line constructed under the framework of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) due to issues which may attract a probe in future.

Ahmad had clearly conveyed that he will not sign the letter of COD until Board gives its approval in writing whereas Board argued that since it was administrative issue, the certificate should be issued by him. Another dispute, sources said, was on promotions of General Managers, exoneration of some officials on a case which was already being investigated by NAB.

One of the power sector insiders told this scribe that Ahmad's daughter is undergoing cancer treatment and he had sought one-month leave to take care of her but the Board refused, after which he tendered his resignation.

This correspondent called and sent an SMS to the outgoing MD NTDC for comments but he did not respond till the filing of this report.

The sources said, most of the Power Division's senior officers, already on two or three boards each, are mulling giving additional charge to an officer sitting in the Ministry as was the past practice. Most Board members of Discos and NTDC belong to a "specific group" originating from KE as many of them are unaware of the intricacies of power sector's distribution system.

Senate Standing Committee on Power has already taken a serious view of appointment of specific group in all the Boards and sought details of their appointments.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021


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