LAHORE - Both the National Accountability Bureau and the Anti-Corruption Establishment Punjab are being headed by two controversial officers.

NAB Chairman Qamar Zaman was accused in the National Insurance Company Limited scam, while ACE Director General Abid Javed himself made controversial appointments.

In the case of Zaman, the Supreme Court ordered the Bureau to conduct investigation against its chief. Zaman had availed leave for an indefinite period since. NAB formed three investigation teams and investigators could call the NAB chairman whenever they felt like.

“The NAB chairman has gone on leave only to make the Supreme Court realise that he did not want to influence the investigation by holding the office of NAB chairman,” said a NAB official, seeking anonymity.

The chairman was accused of illegal posting of former NICL chairman Ayaz Khan Niazi, when the former was performing duties as the Commerce Department additional secretary. He was also accused of hindering the NICL case investigations by transferring former FIA additional director general Zafar Qureshi, since the NAB chairman was the interior secretary, then.

Similarly, ACE DG Abid Javed appointed a most controversial DMG officer Moazzam Iqbal Sipra as ACE Lahore director. Interestingly Sipra himself was facing three corruption inquiries and misuse of the authority in ACE. The director general not only posted him as the director but also patronized him by victimizing the officer assigned inquiries against Sipra.

It may be mentioned here that a well-reputed officer Maqbool was holding inquiry against ACE Lahore director when Sipra tried to influence the inquiry. When the inquiry officer refused to obey his illegal orders, Sipra got him suspended through DG Javed.

Then Sipra threatened an upright officer, Sheikh Irfan, deputy director Technical.

Sipra feared that Irfan was working against his interest and he was instrumental in holding inquiries against him. Sipra threatened him of dire consequences and used filthy language against him. Sheikh Irfan complained the DG about unofficial attitude of Sipra, but the DG remained unmoved. Instead of taking action against Sipra he suspended the complainant over reasons best known to him.

As the federal and Punjab governments have pledged to eliminate corruption from society NAB and ACE will now be observing Anti-Corruption Week from December 9 to December 14.

NAB Punjab will organize various programs to mark Anti-Corruption Week being observed all over the world under the United Nations Convention against Corruption. Inauguration of paintings/ poster exhibitions will be held at Alhamra Art Gallery, Lahore.

Awareness walk will also be held from Lahore Art Council (Alhamra) to Punjab Assembly. But the question is up to what extent these measures would prove to be helpful when the country’s anti-corruption departments are being headed of controversial personalities.