KARACHI: National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has launched investigations regarding illegal appointments of 43 grade-17 Information Officers (IOs) in Sindh Information and Archives Department in 2012.
In an official letter, Sindh NAB’s Additional Director Muhammad Amir Butt asked the Sindh Information Department secretary to provide complete details of contract appointees of Information Officers of grade-17 in 2012 along with their qualification and experience, their salary details including the details of head from where they were paid salaries and asked to provide information whether these officers were appointed during Election Commission ban or not.
According to the NAB documents, these 43 Information Officers of grade-17 were appointed in 2012 on contract basis and then their contracts were extended illegally.
In June 2017 contradicting the Sindh Service Rules and misinterpreting Sindh High Court order, Sindh government confirmed the services of the said 43 Information Officers.
In 2016 some contract officers filed a fresh petition CP D-4751/2016 for the confirmation of their jobs by hiding the original facts from the Sindh High court of the pending five petitions filed against their initial appointments; interestingly Advocate General office also did not point out this position and practically supported the contract officers for obtaining favorite orders.
Said contract officers prayed to the SHC that their services in terms of Sindh Regularisation and Ad hoc and Contract Employees Act 2013 may be regularised; SHC keeping in view the available record ordered Sindh government to complete the process within three months and afterwards immediately then Sindh chief secretary forwarded case to the chief minister who confirmed these officers’ services without getting actual position of the matter.
These officers, majority of the sons, brothers and close relatives of ruling Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) leaders and journalists were appointed in 2012 violating the basic criteria of qualification, Sindh Service Rules and by-passing Sindh Public Service Commission.
At the time of confirmation of these officers, leading legal and constitutional experts of Pakistan were of the view that the order of Sindh High Court which showed as the base of confirmation of these officers was got through hiding the original facts and fraud as neither petitioners nor Advocate General office presented the real facts before court.