LAHORE May 17– Chairman United Business Group (UBG) Iftikhar Ali Malik Sunday congratulating the Prime Minister Imran Khan for making SAARC Anti-Corruption Forum a real success said Pakistan has proved itself as a role model for South Asian countries in stamping out menace of rampant corruption.
In a statement issued here today, the veteran trade leader Iftikhar Ali Malik said Pakistan, under the dynamic leadership of Prime Minister Imran Khan, is the only country whose Corruption Perception Index (CPI) according to Transparency International Report has been decreased.
He said it is an honour for Pakistan that the NAB which will now head the SAARC anti-corruption forum is one of the world best investigation agencies, which has been prescribed for efficient, effective and expeditious disposal of all cases, including white-collar crimes, in a maximum limit of 10 months from complaint verification-to-inquiry-to-investigation and finally to a reference in the accountability court.
He further said we should appreciate NAB for recovering Rs328bn and returning money to hundreds of white collar crime-affected people and some government and private departments and without keeping a single rupee of its share deposited the remaining recovery in the national exchequer.
Iftikhar Malik said despite the fact SAARC faces severe challenges in bonding such a diverse region with different political, social and religious traditions, regardless of lack of common grounds it is crucial that SAARC countries put aside their difference and work to fabricate common solutions to the problems they are facing in their economic and regional development as well as rule of law and menace of corruption.
He said that time has arrived now that all the respective governments of SAARC countries should have a zero tolerance for corruption and money laundering besides this, these countries should educate and involve citizens in building integrity to prevent corruption and punish the corrupt and support those who have suffered from institutional corruption.
Iftikhar Ali Malik said he strongly recommended that the governments of SAARC countries should reform the justice systems by ensuring very stiff and stricter penalties for people found guilty of corrupt practices.
He further said that Pakistan should take further measures to curb the menace of corruption and in this regard, it should promote separation of powers, unveil unbiased budget and service access to stakeholders, decrease the impact of money in politics and address conflict of interest.
He said the government should also give meaningful access to stakeholders in the decision-making process, ending malpractices in the election process and empowering citizens, social campaigners and journalists are also some of the recommendations.
“As long as nobody brings the corrupt to justice, South Asia’s leaders run the risk that future growth only benefits the powerful, doing nothing to help the half-billion South Asians, who still live in poverty,” he concluded–PRESS RELEASE