PAC unhappy with Foreign Ministry's account management
29 June, 2012
ISLAMABAD: The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) on Thursday expressed dissatisfaction over accounts management of the Foreign Affairs Ministry and ordered authorities concerned to amend rules, ensure transparency, and strictly follow government rules.
The committee also directed Foreign Secretary Jalil Abbas Jilani to submit a report about sale of land of Pakistani embassies in Jakarta and Tokyo at nominal rates.
PAC met at Parliament House with its Chairman Nadeem Afzal Gondal in the chair to discuss audit observations about Ministry of Professional and Technical Training (P&TT), Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA), Narcotics Control Division and Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC).
The National Assembly body has already submitted its report to the Foreign Affairs Ministry but no action has been taken in this regard.
The committee directed the secretary to submit the report in one week and provide details of losses incurred to the national exchequer from the sale proceeds of the embassies' land.
Jilani told the committee that restoration of NATO supply was in interest of Pakistan because it was necessary for providing way out for ISAF stationed in Afghanistan.
However, he said, the government still sticks to its demand that the US must tender apology over Salala incident. In absence of a formal apology, it will be difficult for Pakistan to reopen NATO supply, he added.
PAC also sent back several audit paras, saying they might be resolved at Departmental Accounts Committee (DAC). It directed the Foreign Affairs Ministry to look in to these matters thoroughly.
Discussing audit paras of the Higher Education Commission (HEC), PAC expressed its reservations, saying that there was poor management of accounts on part of the department.
During discussion, PAC members got angry over HEC Secretary Suhail Naqvi's "derogatory" remarks. They asked the HEC secretary to tender apology over his remarks against one of the committee members, Noor Alam. Naqvi tendered unconditional apology, which was accepted.
PAC also lauded performance of Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF) over financial management as only few grants and no audit para was presented before the House for a long time. ANF Secretary Javed Iqbal, while responding to a question, told the House that ANF had one helicopter provided by British government for aerial surveillance over long borders with Afghanistan and Iran to check drug trafficking. He said that Pakistan had been declared poppy-free county since 2002.
"As per international rules, any country with less than 1,000 hectares of poppy cultivation is declared poppy-free country," ANF official Brigadier Zahid Abdullah said, adding that land with poppy cultivation in Pakistan had been reduced to 300 hectares from around 1,200 hectares.
PAC also settled certain audit paras of the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC). PAEC Secretary Ansar Aziz said two units of the department were fully operational and generating 600MW of electricity.