President promulgates ordinance amending NAB’s plea bargain law

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ISLAMABAD: President Mamnoon Hussain has promulgated an ordinance amending the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) laws related to plea bargain and voluntary return of illegal capital gain.
The ordinance has disqualified for life the public office holders as well as government servants who benefit from the NAB laws of voluntary return and plea bargain.
The NAB Amendment Ordinance 2017 has come into force today.
Finance Minister Ishaq Dar said the ordinance will be tabled before the Senate on Monday for consideration.
He said the amendment introduced in clause 25A of the NAB ordinance will not be applicable to the previous cases.
Law Minister Zahid Hamid elaborated that the plea bargain and voluntary returns laws have been merged, and will now need to be approved by the court. The individual who returns the embezzled amount will be deemed convicted and will be disqualified if he hold public office.
The controversial plea-bargain law has received criticism from judiciary, opposition parties and civil society for allowing corrupt official to go scot free from corruption.
Recently the NAB granted plea bargain to former finance secretary of Balochistan Mushtaq Raisani who was involved in a Rs40 billion corruption against a voluntary return of Rs2 billion.
This should be also noted that the National Accountability (Amendment) Ordinance 2017 is also expected to be presented before the Senate on Monday.
The Ordinance is also likely to be referred to the standing committee concerned for approval and will then be sent back to the 258th session of the Senate for debate and passage.


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