On the directives of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB), the Sindh government has restructured the Local Bodies (LB) system in the province, as Local Government Secretary Ramzan Awan issued notification on Thursday.
The notification states that on the directives of NAB, the official powers of Section Officers (SOs) of the local bodies have been suspended and the powers have been transferred to the additional secretaries of the Local Government.
The notification has been sent to 29 municipal commissioners in Sindh and 23 departments including the Law Department, districts councils, town and taluka administration, Sindh Building Control Authority, development authorities, Karachi Water and Sewerage Board, the election authority, Public Health Engineering, Rural Development and others.
Under the new system, three deputy secretaries would be authorised to sign the documents related to the financial matters, notifications, transfers and postings, appointments, promotions etc. “If any order, letter, notification or any document related to financial matter is sent without signature of consumed deputy secretaries, the same would be treated as fake or bogus,” according to the notification.
Deputy Secretary General Ali Gul Sanjrani, Deputy Secretary (admin) Aftab Ahmed Abbasi and Housing Town Planning Deputy Secretary (admin) Abdul Ghani Mehar would be authorised to sign under the new formula. The new method is used to prevent financial and other administrative frauds being caused by the section officers in matters of municipalities in the province.
NAB has issued these directives after the investigations in the local bodies system from 2008 to 2015, during which the investigation authority found proofs of huge corruption. It is worth mentioning here that NAB had arrested former LG secretary Ali Ahmed Lund on charge of administrative and financial irregularities and corruption of Rs 560 million.
NAB has also arrested Javed Hanif, another former secretary, for corruption and misuse of powers and now he is on bail. Around 62 officials including 12 section officers are already on bail before arrest from different courts, as they were found involved in misappropriation of the official funds and illegal appointments etc.
In the last two weeks, the Sindh government has seized funds and powers of the officials of around 29 district municipal corporations, 18 district councils and 1,130 union councils. Now, these funds have been restored under SLGO 2013 in order to pay salaries and pensions of these civic bodies and the funds required for necessary expenditures.
Source: Daily Times
Byline: Staff reporter
November 11, 2016