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The government on Thursday approved the appointment of Aftab Sultan as National Accountability Bureau (NAB) chairman, reported Aaj News.

The decision was taken by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif in a meeting of the Federal Cabinet. Sultan is a retired BPS-22 officer, who served as director general of the Intelligence Bureau (IB) in 2011 and 2013. He was originally a civil servant employed in the Police Service of Pakistan.

Addressing a press conference, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah said Sultan was a competent officer. "I hope that he would work honestly and without any bias. Sultan is expected to introduce NAB reforms, and boost accountability."

Acting NAB chief challenges PAC jurisdiction

The position of NAB chairman had been unoccupied since former chairman Justice Javed Iqbal retired on June 2, 2022. Deputy Chairman Zahira Shah was the acting NAB head during this time.

Constitutionally, the term of NAB chairman is four years. Under the National Accountability (Second Amendment) Bill 2021, that was passed by a joint sitting of Parliament — the NAB chairman, who completes a four-year term, cannot be appointed to the post for a second tenure.

The bill has also reduced the term of NAB chairman to four years.

Strengthening accountability institutions is a key requirement of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) that highlighted improving governance and mitigating corruption in its announcement of the staff-level agreement on Pakistan's bailout programme last week.

"To improve governance and mitigate corruption, the authorities are establishing a robust electronic asset declaration system and plan to undertake a comprehensive review of the anti-corruption institutions (including the National Accountability Bureau) to enhance their effectiveness in investigating and prosecuting corruption cases," the IMF had stated.

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Pakistani1 Jul 21, 2022 06:13pm
With more retired Armed forces personnel in top position, are politicians really responsible for running the country?
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