- Refusal comes a day after he returned Elections (Amendment) Bill, 2022 without signing it
President Dr Arif Alvi refused to sign the National Accountability (Amendment) Bill on Monday, saying that the implementation was "misused for political exigencies by those in power and by vested interests".
In a post on Twitter, the president said that as conceived originally, the bill took inspiration from Hazrat Umar’s incident when he was asked about source of extra cloth in his cloak. He said the onus in financial crimes is on the accused to provide a money trail.
"While public clamored for return of looted wealth, long judicial processes & poor prosecution failed most efforts. Instead of improving the law to avoid miscarriage, to close loopholes & make it stronger, we are weakening it beyond recognition," the tweet said.
It added that these changes will demolish accountability, creating a façade of justice that hides a corrupt elite capture ensuring exploitation of the common man.
On Sunday, the president had also sent back the Elections (Amendment) Bill, 2022 without signing it, saying the bill was “anti-progress and regressive.”
The President said that many such decisions will continue to challenge us and history shows that those who make the right decisions, “and those who don’t, squander opportunities that obstruct their path to glory.”
Earlier, the National Assembly had passed bills to abolish the PTI government’s election reforms giving overseas Pakistanis the right to vote through i-Voting and electronic voting machines (EVMs), as well as the NAB laws.
After the president’s refusal to sign the bills, the joint session of the Parliament had passed the National Accountability (Second Amendment) Bill 2021 and Elections (Amendment) Bill, 2022.
After the joint sitting’s approval, the bills were sent once again to the president for approval.
In a tweet today, former PM Imran Khan said that the amended bill will safeguard white collar criminals from accountability in Pakistan.
“Entire economy and political system of Pakistan was derailed through US-backed regime change conspiracy simply to give this cabal of crooks another NRO. PMLN’s Dastgir confirmed this,” said Khan.
“Today, with this one amended NAB law we are heading towards destruction by removing white collar criminals from accountability,” he wrote.