ISLAMABAD - After coming to know about major irregularities and violations committed by Karachi Prot Trust, the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has decided to initiate regular investigation against the Trust and handed over the case to the bureau’s Enforcement Wing for further action.
The bureau has identified and gathered sufficient details about a number of misappropriations in different projects of Karachi Port Trust. There is sufficient evidence available with the NAB against KPT to proceed against the individuals responsible for causing massive loss to the state and thus it has been decided to hand over these cases to its enforcement agency for further action, NAB spokesman Zafar Iqbal Khan said.
Karachi Port Trust (KPT) is a Pakistani federal government agency that oversees the operations of the Port of Karachi.
NAB has claimed that KPT, violating Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) rules and laid down government policies of land port strategy, committed major misappropriations while awarding the contract. According to the information, NAB has established violations in induction of 75 tons Bollard poll tugs; non-enforcement of contract clauses in Chinese Works Engineering (CWE); the dredging contractor; malafide decisions in planning of deep water port; and major shortfalls in port’s land allotment policies. NAB spokesman said that despite repeated reminders, KPT has neither taken any action nor the current administration of KPT has initiated any mechanism to prevent corruption and further losses.
NAB through an official handout Thursday said ‘Awareness and Prevention Framework’ of the bureau had been effective in identifying mis-procurements during planning, procurement, contracting, and contract evaluation process.
Under its prevention regime NAB has been investigating mega projects amounting to over Rs. 1.5 trillion under the directions of Chairman NAB. In this context mega projects under Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA), Pakistan State Oil (PSO), Oil and Gas Development Company Limited (OGDCL), Capital Development Authority (CDA), National Highway Authority (NHA), Port Qasim Authority (PQA), Fauji Fertilizer Company (FFC) and Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) were identified. NAB says that interaction between these departments and NAB covered presentation by each department to give their viewpoints.
Following these presentations and considerable correspondence on the subject, numerous instances of mis-procurements have come to light. This, however, doesn’t mean that, wherever necessary, prevention cannot be converted into enforcement.
NAB says that since the approval of a plan under ‘Awareness and Prevention Framework’ in May 2012 by the Chairman NAB, Admiral (Retd) Fasih Bokhari, the bureau has redoubled efforts to prevent corruption. The idea of ‘Prevention of Corruption’ was a neglected aspect of NAB anti-corruption endeavours, which has been given priority under the present Chairman. He is of the view that enforcement alone cannot eliminate corruption from our society; it would have to be a mix of awareness, prevention and enforcement, giving priority to prevention. Chairman NAB accordingly empowered the Awareness and Prevention Division; which remained in constant liaison with various agencies under Federal and Provincial setups especially the Regulators for improvement in their existing framework. Regulators were also engaged to scrutinize their structural and resource mechanism of their setups to fight against prevalent challenges of corruption and for finding solutions to make them more robust, effective and transparent to anti-corruption drive.