LAHORE: Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif is likely to appear before the National Accountability Bureau’s Lahore office in the Punjab Saaf Pani Company scam on Monday (today).

The NAB early last month had issued a notice to Shahbaz Sharif directing him to appear before a combined investigation team of NAB Lahore in connection with the affairs of the Saaf Pani Company.

“Shahbaz Sharif will appear before the NAB on Monday to reply its queries with regard to the Saaf Pani Company. Mr Sharif has served the people of the province with full dedication and honesty and he will clarify any matter in this regard,” Malik Muhammad Ahmad, ex-Punjab government spokesman, told Dawn on Sunday.

In April, the Supreme Court was informed during hearing in the Saaf Pani company case that despite Rs4 billion being spent on this project not a single drop of clean water has been made available to the citizens.

A two-member bench of the SC headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar conducted the hearing of the suo motu case regarding alleged irregularities in appointments in the Punjab Saaf Pani Company (PSPC).

The company’s CEO had told the court that Rs300 million had been spent on the services of foreign consultants so far, an estimated amount of Rs150 billion had been allocated for the whole project, while 116 plants of clean water installed at a cost of Rs4 billion.

The NAB in November last had launched a thorough probe into alleged corruption in the 56 public-sector companies formed by Shahbaz Sharif administration in Punjab.

These companies are accused of certain irregularities, recruitment in violation of procurement rules and merit, nepotism, and non-completion of various projects in time.

There has been a lack of performance and regular audit and non-transparent procedure of tendering in these companies which come under direct supervision of the chief minister.

Shahbaz Sharif had also appeared before NAB for alleged misuse of authority in the award of a contract in the Rs14 billion Ashiyana Housing scam and recorded his statement.

Published in Dawn, June 4th, 2018