Accountability is key. Along with the democratic political process

A Special Note of Thanks to Beena Sarwar, for running this on her blog. Being reproduced as it is:

admiral_fasih_bokhari-nab_chairman-1At a time when Pakistan is reeling under all kinds of attacks, the continuation of the democratic political process and the accountability this process entails is critical. On Jan 28, 2013 a copy of a letter to the President of Pakistan from Admiral (rtd.) Fasih Bokhari, the widely respected Chairman of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) was released to the media. Admiral Bokhari is known to be under pressure from various elements in the judiciary, media, and cartels, and has been threatened repeatedly. At age 71, he is fearless, believing he has nothing to lose. His words to a friend in a private email:

“Promise me that you and your generation will never give up the fight for this great country and its great people.”

I join that friend in making this promise. As do many others, whatever our political differences. See letter below from Usman Khalid, Director Rifah Institute of Foreign affairs, reproduced here with his permission (thanks to Yasmeen Aftab Ali in Lahore):

“NAB has been used by all past governments to ‘get’ their political opponents. It is staffed by ‘holdovers’ of previous chairmen of NAB. Diverse political pressures are exerted quite openly and very strongly. Admiral Bokhari was subjected to fierce pressures not only on behalf of influential accused but also the media and the courts. During the incumbency of Admiral Bokhari as Chairman NAB, he was faced by the extraordinary situation that persons under investigation included the President, sitting and past Prime Ministers and ministers, and the son of the Chief Justice. The conduct of Admiral Fasih Bokhari has been dignified, impartial and politically correct; he did not flinch from taking difficult decisions and conducted himself with great dignity. He deserves support from the press and the civil society to the same degree as the CJ when he was under pressure to resign. The exit of Admiral Bokhari as Chairman of NAB would be very destabilizing at this juncture. We urge the President not to accept his resignation and we request the Admiral to press on impartially with investigations and NOT his resignation.” [note: Admiral Bokhari’s letter was not a letter of resignation, although many viewed it as such]

This is a cross post. Originally posted

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  • Aleem Afridi  On February 28, 2013 at 10:45 am

    The fact that opinion-leaders and media are commenting on him (adversely ?) , has made him a controversial personality. That is unfortunate !! AA

  • TMH  On February 28, 2013 at 10:46 am

    All along he has been playing second fiddle to his benefactor, now at the end of his rule, he has awoken up
    to his responsibilities. Is he an honest person? I do not think so, his choice of master is proof enough, to say
    that he has his own axe to grind or it is a petty vengeance. These type of honest person are thousands in Pakistan.


  • Mansoor Mubeen  On February 28, 2013 at 3:24 pm

    a government functionary, who is appointed to handle a specific job ( accountability ) when is not discharging his duties, and when he is being asked to do his designated job by supreme court, is writing a letter to the president of Pakistan, complaining, that supreme court is not letting him do , what he wants to do ( in this case, he does not want to do his job of accountability, and is not interested in fulfilling his duty ) . and this is a confidential letter, which no body knows how it is leaked to the media, and then this gentleman forwarded this letter on our blog himself, solving the mystery around , that who leaked , otherwise a confidential letter to media, is being projected as champion of accountability, and i do not understand why it is being surfaced again and again on our blog.

    on the first count, he is not performing his duty, for which he is being paid by national exchequer,
    on the second count, he is not supposed to write a letter to the president , on a baseless complaint,
    on the third count, his letter, once written should not have been leaked to the media,
    on the fourth count, he himself should not have forwarded the letter to this private blog.


  • Inamullah  On February 28, 2013 at 3:24 pm

    Plz do not forget that Adm.Bukhari is Devil’s Consultant,who got him appointed as Chairman NAB……………………………Inam KLhan

  • Nasim  On March 1, 2013 at 10:42 am

    When the whole system is stacked against you then it is very difficult to do a good job. Admiral was being pushed from various sides and he tried his best.

    Pakistan needs replacement of at least three top layers with competent people. Which politician can do this job? My hunch is none.

    However if judiciary is supported by civil society and military then there is a possibility of a change. Even then you will need a daring leader who can decide against his own colleagues, relatives and friends.

    Such a leader is really difficult to find.

    Nasim Hassan

    Sent from my iPad

  • Muhammad Chaudry  On March 1, 2013 at 10:43 am

    Nazim sahib,
    If all what comes in papers is true then Adm.R) Bokhari facilitated escape of Tauqir, accused of graft of 84 billions and his NAB gave a clean chit to Riaz Malik , a close buddy of Zardari. so where do we find integerity and steadfastness?

  • Nasim  On March 3, 2013 at 1:14 am

    There is always story behind the story. In Pakistan nothing can happen with active collaboration of many people.
    In Pakistan no one gets convicted.


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