Dawn News

LHC restrains new Lesco chief from work

LAHORE, Sept 11: The Lahore High Court on Tuesday suspended the appointment notification of Engineer Zia Latif as the Lesco chief executive officer and sought reply from the Ministry of Water and Power.

Justice Muhammad Khalid Mahmood Khan issued this order on a petition filed by Lesco’s former CEO Sharafat Ali Sial.

The petitioner submitted that the ministry terminated his contract and through a notification issued on Sept 4, 2012 appointed Mr Latif as new Lesco CEO on a contract. He said the impugned appointment was against rules and regulations as the Board of Governors of Lesco was empowered to make such appointment, and not the ministry.

Furthermore, he argued, the post should have been filled with permanent appointment instead of a contract. He prayed that the notification be set aside for being illegal and the respondent restrained from functioning as the Lesco CEO. The judge stopped the respondent from functioning as the Lesco CEO and directed the Ministry of Water and Power to reply within three weeks.

CONFUSION: It was a day of confusion at the Lesco Headquarters on Tuesday when former chief executive officer Sharafat Sial returned to take charge after four days. Mr Ziaul Latif was not sure about his status.

The entire Lesco staff did not know whom to obey and who was in charge. The BoDs also remained in confusion.

“On the one hand, the ministry is directly issuing orders bypassing the board and, on the other, it is issuing stay order,” said a company official.

“Currently, there are three authorities – the prime minister’s office, the ministry and the court, all issuing conflicting orders,” he said.

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