NAB secures 77% conviction rate in accountability courts this year

Chairman National Accountability Bureau (NAB), Qamar Zaman Chaudhry on Thursday said the bureau has secured 77 percent conviction rate in accountability courts this year.

Talking to APP, he said amid constant deliberations and proper monitoring, the performance of prosecution division has been improved and the latest statistics show an enhanced performance by prosecution division.

In an exclusive talk after culmination of NAB's Director Generals (DGs) Conference here, he said prosecution was given targets and as a result the accountability courts conviction ratio is now remarkable.

The chairman said DGs Conference has discussed in details several policy issues relating to reinvigoration of Bureau's work where all DGs gave their valuable suggestions on basis of their practical experiences.

Qamar Zaman said due to various reasons, NAB's working got adversely affected during the previous years. In that backdrop, the year 2014 was the year of reinvigoration of NAB, he said and added present management initiated process of putting NAB back on rails.

He said after a thorough and comprehensive analysis of deficiencies in structure and operations of the organization, a reform and restructuring programme was put in place which has not only entrusted a new lease of life for the organization but also infused it with a new character; a character marked by fairness, objectivity, professionalism and transparency.

Highlighting the measures adopted, the chairman said these included introduction of Combined Investigation Teams (CIT), review of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) making them relevant to current times, clearly defined Job Descriptions, rational timelines for completing inquiries and investigations, capacity building trainings tailored around specific job requirements and rationalization of workload has started showing results.

An objective appraisal system - Partly Quantified Grading System - and an Internal Accountability Mechanism (IAM) has improved quality of output considerably with fewer instances of highhandedness and unprofessional conduct, he added.The chairman said during DGs Conference performance of NAB bureaus and headquarters was reviewed and status of implementation of decisions taken in previous Conference. It was found that most of the decisions were implemented in letter and spirit.

Qamar Zaman said he has stressed upon importance of team work and added Prosecution Division has been strengthened to evolve a strong mechanism for nabbing the corrupt. He said holding of this conference has not only provided an opportunity to all DGs to have interaction with each other but also to review their last year performance.

The chairman said the conference would help in overcoming their shortcomings to discharge their national duty and future course of action with firm resolve to eradicate corruption as well as to set targets for future working so that regional bureaus may achieve their goals and targets well in time.

"We have introduced computerized Monitoring and Evaluation System (MES) in all regions. A pilot project of NAB Rawalpindi was completed. The outcome of the pilot project was shared during the conference," he said.

He said continuous efforts are required to implement this system across NAB in order to further improve working of NAB, adding that due to this reason, Corruption Perception Index (CPI) as per Transparency Index (TI) report of 2015 has decreased from 126 to 117.

He said it was suggested that there was a need to devise a mechanism for analysis of all significant cases (failed and successful) in line with good national and international practices, so that Investigation Officers be provided an insight about causes of failure and success in terms of lessons learnt.

The chairman said NAB has prosecuted corrupt and has recovered Rs. 278 billion looted public money since its inception while increase in applications to NAB is reflective of people's confidence in our work.

Source: National Accountability Bureau