Bill tabled to scrap Pakistan’s corruption watchdog

April 15th, 2009 - 8:45 pm ICT by IANS  

Pervez Musharraf Islamabad, April 15 (IANS) A bill to scrap corruption watchdog National Accountability Bureau (NAB) and transfer its powers to the legislature was tabled Wednesday in the National Assembly, the lower house of Pakistan’s parliament.
Tabling the bill, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Babar Awan said NAB was widely seen to have been used as a tool for taking political revenge.

Terming the bill a step away from revenge and towards reconciliation, he pointed out that the opposition would get 50 percent representation in the new Parliamentary Committee for Accountability that would replace the NAB.

Meanwhile, a constitutional package is to be drawn up to replace the controversial 17th constitutional amendment that had transferred key executive powers from the prime minister’s office to the presidency.

Attorney General Muhammad Latif Khan Khosa told APP news agency that National Assembly Speaker Fehmida Mirza had sought names from the political parties represented in parliament for constituting a committee that would draw up the package.

“I hope the committee will start its work from next week,” Khosa said.

Then president Pervez Musharraf had pushed through the amendment in 2003. It transferred the powers to appoint the service chiefs and the Supreme Court chief justice, as also to dismiss the federal and provincial governments and the National Assembly and the provincial legislatures, from the prime minister’s office to the presidency.

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