Despite court orders, NAB yet to recover billions in RPPs case


ISLAMABAD: Despite a clear judgement of the apex court calling for the recovery of billions of rupees from the owners of rental power projects (RPPs), the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) is yet to finalise its investigations against nine of the total of a dozen RPPs, sources told Daily Times on Saturday.
The Supreme Court, in its verdict, directed NAB to recover $223.58 million wasted on the establishment of RPPs. However, NAB is yet to recover Rs 20 billion from the powerful RPP owners, sources added. The NAB investigators are working on 12 different RPP projects which are situated in different locations. 
References have been filed against only three RPP sponsors and owners in the Accountability Court (AC)-1 Islamabad, while the rest of the nine are still under investigation. More than 50 individuals and officials of different distribution companies, ministries and departments have been placed on the Exit Control List (ECL), sources disclosed. According to reports, in its first Executive Board Meeting (EBM) under the chairmanship of Qamar Zaman Chaudhry, NAB decided to file a supplementary reference against former minister for water and power Raja Pervez Ashraf in the RPP case Naudero-II. 
A preliminary reference had already been filed against nine other accused for alleged misuse of authority and violation of rules while awarding licence to Naudero-II and shifting equipment from one project to another that allegedly caused a huge loss to the national exchequer. The nine accused against whom the preliminary reference had been filed in the accountability court are: former water and power secretary and PEPCO ex-chairman Shahid Rafi, Ministry of Water and Power ex-additional secretary Sheikh Zarrar Aslam, PEPCO ex-MD/CEO Engineer Tahir Basharat Cheema, PEPCO Board of Directors (BOD) ex-directors Malik Muhammad Razi Abbas and Wazir Ali Bhayo, ex-GM WAPDA Power Privatisation Organisation (WPPO), CEO Central Power Generation Company Ltd (CPGCL), Tariq Nazir, CPGCL ex-CEO Abdul Malik Memon and PEPCO ex-MD Rasool Khan Mahsud. When contacted, NAB’s Public Relations Officer Hafiz Muhammad Irfan said NAB has so for recovered approximately Rs 5.25 billion in the RPPs case. 

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