NLC scam saga takes new turn

The NLC scam involves two billion rupees. – File photo by AFP
The NLC scam involves two billion rupees. – File photo by AFP

ISLAMABAD: Three retired generals accused of being involved in a multi-billion scam of National Logistics Cell (NLC) have been taken back in active service so that they may face court martial, the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of National Assembly was informed on Thursday.

Planning Commission secretary Javed Malik told the PAC, which met at the Parliament House, that the GHQ had instituted a court of inquiry against the accused generals.

The NLC is run by the military authorities, but administratively it falls under the Planning Commission and its secretary acts as its principal accounting officer before the PAC.

The PAC members, unhappy with the GHQ’s handling of the case, expressed scepticism over its latest move. And they became even more sceptic when an official of National Accountability Bureau informed them that despite repeated attempts the GHQ was unwilling to share record of the scandal with the NAB.

The PAC had asked the NAB to move against the accused officials.

“After multiple inquiries conducted at various levels, the PAC in June last year gave its final recommendations, asking departments concerned, including the GHQ, to take necessary action against the officers found guilty of financial corruption.

But we are yet to hear anything concrete from the GHQ,” remarked Yasmin Rehman of the PPP.

She said the PAC would view the latest GHQ move as a delaying tactic until it completed its investigations and brought the accused to book.

Answering a question, the NAB official said that so far the chief of the army staff and the NAB chairman had met three times to work out how their two organisations could have parallel investigations.

It had now been decided that the GHQ would move against the military officers and the NAB against the two civilians found guilty of deliberately causing financial loss to the NLC, the official said.

He said the NAB inquiry was being delayed because the GHQ was yet to provide any record on the scam. PAC chairman Nadeem Afzal Gondal directed the defence secretary to cooperate with the NAB and report back on the matter to the committee after four weeks.

The issue of financial mismanagement and alleged corruption of Rs2 billion in the NLC first came to light in Feb 2009 when the PAC asked the Planning Commission to look into the matter. The-then PAC chairman, Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, first gave a deadline of two months for determining the truth about the scandal. Subsequently, four inquiries were conducted but the issue remained unresolved.

The inquiry reports held Lt-Gen (retd) Khalid Munir Khan, Lt-Gen (retd) M. Afzal Muzaffar, Maj-Gen (retd) Khalid Zaheer Akhtar, Najibur Rehman and Saeedur Rehman responsible for the losses incurred between 2004 and 2008.

They not only borrowed money from commercial banks on high interest rates but also invested pensioners’ money in risky business of stock market and received commission from companies through which the money was invested. Over Rs4 billion was invested in the stock market and the NLC suffered a loss of about Rs1.8 billion as a result.

The PAC also discussed the issue of NLC’s status. NLC Director General Maj-Gen Junaid Rehmat said he had sent a summary to the government to resolve the issue because its ambiguous status sometimes caused unnecessary problems.

The PAC members praised the NLC’s new manage-ment for turning the organisation around and for earning profits.

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Comments (21) Closed

Sep 09, 2012 04:49am
BTW whose idea and creation was the Taliban?
Sep 09, 2012 10:45pm
No one should be surprised. There is decay in moral values, and rapid consumerism has made human thirst enquenchable.
Imran Sheikh
Sep 12, 2012 11:07am
Power eventually always lies with the people. Simply put, one million armed people cannot subdue the other one hundred seventy nine million people, if they refuse to submit. The only reason the military forces have so much room is that people have given it to them because traditionally the military was held in high esteem. If and when the people resolve to take back this space no one can resist this, morally or physically.
Sep 07, 2012 08:01am
To those who say army is relatively clean organization in your face. It feels clean because its closed and not everyone is allowed look into its affairs and hence we don't know what happening to the money
Sep 08, 2012 07:29am
Why GHQ is not allowing the investigation. The government should have power above all, even Kayani so they can direct them and make sure everyone comes under rule of law. This is absurd!
Sep 09, 2012 11:17pm
The country overall belongs to them anyway then why are they still inclined toward corruption?
Sep 08, 2012 10:58pm
So what's new?
Syed Ahmed
Sep 07, 2012 03:31pm
Couldn't they be tried by the civil courts?
Muhammad Nawaz
Sep 07, 2012 09:38pm
We have given our Army so much room that they can interfere in almost everything and when it comes to accountability and specially of that organization that fall under the direct or indirect control of military there is nothing one can do.
Sep 07, 2012 09:35pm
We always blame poltical leaders and forget these big crocodiles to catch up....finally hamid mir is the one who has the guts to speak against them ..and these monsters are also responsible for putting country in such a mess.
Sep 07, 2012 08:25pm
one odd person does not mean whole system is corrupt. if i am not wrong pakistan is surviving because of army(1948,1965, 1971, nuclear program headed by army). if you like talibanization than war on terror is surely wrong.
Sep 10, 2012 05:16am
Sep 10, 2012 05:24am
For your kind information, we lost all the wars...please start reading history
Sep 10, 2012 07:30am
yes there were mistakes and some needs at that tym bt should we not need to correct those mistakes??? i dnt know initially whether it was our war or not bt now its our war...lets unite and stand firm with army to uproot this menace.....Pakistan zindabad
Sep 09, 2012 04:32pm
Hasan Cheema, well said!
S. Imam
Sep 09, 2012 05:20pm
Sign a no-war pact with India. Follow Egypt's example and retire most, if not all generals, and restructure the armed forces with more stringent laws and review system and abolish perks.
Sep 07, 2012 05:14am
Nothing will happen as the corrupt officers will shield their brothers in arm. Army is a holy cow and not answerable to anyone in the name of national interest.
Sep 07, 2012 06:09am
corruption is every where,army is also part of this society so how can they stay away from this.
Hasan Cheema
Sep 07, 2012 06:10am
Kindly put all Generals away from businesses and tell them to defend Pakistan rather than doing business while in service. We are not paying billions so that Army Officers will set up Housing schemes, Logistic companies, fertilizer companies, bakeries, cinemas and so on while the Pakistani Defense will be becoming pathetic day by day as Professionalism within Army is being replaced with Business minded thinking.
Sep 09, 2012 11:30am
1.8 Billion Loss and 2 Billion Corruption. Figures do not add up
Ahmed j
Sep 07, 2012 09:56am
Same Generals make the nation believe that War on Terror is Pakistan's war. There is always a reason for their actions