The value of the assets of members of the 12th (2003-04) National Assembly averaged just below Rs27 million, but increased to Rs81 million in 2008-09, a three-fold increase, according to an analysis carried out by the Pakistan Institute of Legislative Development and Transparency (Pildat).
It indicates that today's MNA is twice as rich as a member of the previous (13th) assembly.
A series of Pildat reports titled “How Rich are Pakistani MNAs” has analysed assets declared by MNAs for 2003-04 to 2005-06, 2006-07, 2007-08 and 2008-09. The analysis is based on data contained in the gazettes published by the Election Commission on Oct 15, 2008, and Oct 27 last year.
According to 2008-09 declarations, the current average value of assets held by an MNA stands at Rs80.89 million, an increase of 9.5 per cent over the 2007-2008 figures of Rs73.92 million. The average value of assets owned by non-Muslim MNAs, however, is Rs20.35 million -- 75 per cent less than the overall average of Rs81 million.
In terms of wealth, Mehboobullah Jan of the PPP (NA-23, Kohistan) tops the list, with total assets of Rs3.288 billion. He is followed by Shahid Khaqan Abbasi of the PML-N (NA-50, Rawalpindi-I), with assets of Rs1.627 billion; Jahangir Khan Tareen of the PML-F (NA-195, Rahimyar Khan-IV), with Rs1.095 billion; Saeed Ahmed Zafar (Independent, NA-162, Nankana Sahib-II Old Sheikhupura-VII), with Rs1.030 billion; and Nuzhat Sadiq of the PML-N (NA-277, Punjab-V) with Rs912.81 million.
Based on 2007-08 declarations also, Mehboobullah Jan is the wealthiest MNA, with assets of Rs3.252 billion. He is followed by Nuzhat Sadiq, with Rs1.514 billion; Chaudhry Zahid Iqbal of the PPP (NA-162, Sahiwal-III), with Rs1.248 billion; Chaudhry Nazir Ahmed Jatt of the PML-Q (NA-167, Vehari-I), with Rs843 million; and Jahangir Khan Tareen, with Rs716 million.
At the bottom of the list of wealthy MNAs in 2008-09 is Saeed Iqbal Chaudhry of the PPP (NA-81, Faisalabad-VII), with Rs29 million net liabilities, followed by Roshan Din Junejo of the PPP (NA-236, Sanghar-III), Sheikh Rohale Asghar of the PML-N (NA-124 Lahore-VII), Ghulam Farid Kathia of the PPP (NA-161 Sahiwal-II) and Ayaz Amir of the PML-N (NA-60 Chakwal-I).
Nuzhat Sadiq remained the richest woman MNA in 2007-08 and 2008-09. She is followed by Asma Arbab Alamgir of the PPP (NA-325, KP-IV) with total assets of Rs515.25 million in 2007-08 and Rs682.05 million in 2008-09, and Begum Hasnain of the PPP (NA-292, Punjab-XX) with Rs332.50 million in 2007-08 and Rs298.40 million in 2008-09.
Mohammad Kamran Khan (Independent, NA-40, Tribal Area-V, Fata) appears to be the most effective manager of assets which grew 42 times in just one year, followed by Maulana Mohammad Qasim of MMA (NA-10, Mardan-II) whose assets increased 12 times and Bilal Yaseen of the PML-N (NA-120, Lahore-III) with a nine times increase during the period.
In 2008-09, the PML-F remained the richest party in terms of average wealth of its MNAs (Rs239 million per MNA), followed by the NPP Rs122 million, independents Rs108 million, PPP Rs102 million, PML-N Rs75 million, PML-Q Rs62 million, ANP Rs61 million, PPP-S Rs37 million, MQM Rs25 million, BNP Rs14 million and MMA Rs6 million.
In 2002-06, Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaaf topped the list of average wealth of MNAs. Its chief Imran Khan (NA-71, Mianwali-I) had assets worth Rs85 million, followed by the PML-N (average assets per MNA Rs61 million), PML-Q Rs56 million and PPP Rs34 million.
In geographical terms, differences in average wealth are significant. In 2008-2009, MNAs from the Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) had the highest average value of assets per MNA, followed by those from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Punjab, Fata, Sindh and Balochistan. MNAs from the ICT also topped the list in 2002-06 and 2007-08.
In terms of percentage of the combined value of assets in 2008-09, Punjab topped the list, with a share of 54 per cent (down from 73pc in 2002-06), followed by Khyber Pakhtunkhwa 31 per cent (up from 4pc in 2002-06), Sindh 10 per cent (down from 11pc in 2002-06); Fata unchanged at three per cent, ICT one per cent (down from 5pc in 2002-06) and Balochistan one per cent (down from 4pc in 2002-06).