Honest traders should not be alarmed: NAB chief

Staff Report

Islamabad

National Accountability Bureau (NAB) Chairman Justice (retd) Javed Iqbal has said that the anti-graft body will not take any such step that might alarm honest traders and businessmen.

He said this during his visit to the Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry (ICCI) the other day.

He assured the businessmen that the NAB would not take any steps that might cause the honest businessmen to feel harassed or harried.

He said that the NAB has set up a special desk to address the issues of the business community. “As the business community has been playing a key role in the economic development of the country, the NAB would protect their genuine interests,” he said.

Justice (retd) Javed said that if any member of the business community has grievances against any tax officers, a complaint could be filed in writing with the NAB. “The anti-graft body would look into the matter and take legal action against the wrongdoer,” he said.

He assured the traders that no discriminatory statutory regulatory order (SRO) would be issued to give benefit to a few businessmen. “Honest entrepreneurs should rather focus on the growth and promotion of their businesses and the NAB would protect their interests,” he said.

Justice Javed said mistakes could be ignored, but crimes could not be ignored. He said that Pakistan’s foreign debt has crossed $100 billion.

He said that the NAB received 39,728 complaints and recovered Rs297 billion in the last couple of years.

He urged housing societies to return the whole amount to the affected people or give them plots to avoid the NAB action.

“The anti-graft body has retrieved and distributed Rs850 million among the affected while more amount would be retrieved from the housing societies and given to the people,” he said.

While commenting on the action taken by the CDA against encroachments in the federal capital, he said that in the next phase, action would be taken against those who allowed these encroachments to flourish.

He also vowed that the NAB would continue to protect the interests of Pakistan and would conduct across the board accountability to curb money-laundering, corruption and others crimes.

ICCI President Amir Waheed said that the business community would fully support the NAB in its efforts to curb corruption.

Waheed also said that the NAB chief’s assurance for the businessmen was a source of confidence for them.

He said that the ICCI would never support any illegal business activity that might take place within its domain. He urged that the decisions of the Federal Ombudsman should be fully implemented to provide justice to the people.

He urged the government to bring changes in the laws to do away with corruption. He said that action should be taken against those officers who facilitated encroachments in Islamabad.

ICCI Senior Vice-President Muhammad Naveed and ICCI Vice-President Nisar Mirza thanked the NAB chief for visiting the chamber.

 

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