Show notes after the Jump
Laidback Show Episode 10 – @NaveeNaqvi
Show notes after the Jump
Show notes after the Jump
After a lapse of over two years, today a full bench of the Supreme Court of Pakistan came through with a historic judgment declaring the 2007 National Reconciliatory Ordinance null and void. It must be recalled that the NRO was the mastermind of the then President of Pakistan General Pervaiz Musharraf who in October 2007 orchestrated this pact with the exiled PPP leader Benazir Bhutto in an attempt to negotiate his own extended stay on the Presidential seat of power and in this process pardoned most of the corrupt criminals whom he himself detested so vehemently in his autobiography a few months earlier all in the name of political compromise. Since then history stands witness to have watched the assassination of Benazir Bhutto and the people of Pakistan stood embarrassingly dumbfounded as one of the most corrupt politician Mr. Asif Ali Zardari snuck through the back doors of diplomacy to land into the Presidency of Pakistan.
Today the year-old restored judiciary stood strong to declare the NRO null and void, a short order issued outlined some important aspect of this new judgment but the exact specification and its affect on the Presidency remains to be ironed out. But it might be in the interest of Pakistan to not embarrass and ridicule Asif Ali Zardari and the Presidency any further and it might serve us all well to settle for a negotiated compromise, possibly having him to hand over most of the illegally amassed wealth back into the national treasury in lieu of his respect and freedom
By: Amjad Malik, MA, LLM
I have been vehemently advocating the need to erect a system of accountability by invoking a new commission and an Act of Parliament to curb mal practice, plundering and looting whilst one is holding a public office. This new Commission can truly ensure compliance with the Clauses of Article 62 and 63 of the constitution too. We are witnessing many names in the list of beneficiaries of National Reconciliation Ordinance, and many names which are not in it, are either praying to be in it or cursing the said redemption order of the former military dictator who came to rid corruption on 12 October 99, and left giving this strange gift of ‘hypocrisy’ to the nation.
Mal practice, corruption and mal governance is a common phenomenon of the third world countries as wealth is confined to the elite and institutions are so weak that they do not get roots and are run on the dictat of personalities. Pakistan is amongst those few unfortunate countries where despite abundance of natural resources, talent, passion, capacity of self dependency in edible food products, the country is still rating higher in corruption, suffering from food, electricity, gas, sugar shortages. Who is to be blamed is a long short, and to me, all bear the collective responsibility to bring this country to a stage where each person of any possible public stature is not free from corruption charges, which I will call allegations.
Things are definitely heating up for Asif Ali Zardari, with the NRO effectively being contested by a full bench of the Supreme Court of Pakistan, it seems panic has started to prevail in the Presidency and disaster managemnt has begun. A few days back Geo Tv was tipped off on a developing story in Switzerland where the Pakistan UK High Commisioner Wajid Shamsul Hasan specially flew to Geneva to meet the lawyer prosecuting Asif Ali Zardari‘s Swiss cases in an attempt to confiscate all the evidence present there. It must be recalled that it were the infamous Swiss cases where Mr. Zardari as being tried for charges of money laundering to the tune of $60 Mln, the charges were dropped after the Pakistani govt aka Pervaiz Musharraf choose not to pursue the case in a deal validated under the NRO with Benazir Bhutto in October 2007. The evidence present in the lawyers office was hence effectively lethal for Asif Zardari if the Supreme Court nulls and voids the NRO Ordinance.
Geo News reporter apparently siad that the lawyer resisted and refused to hand over the evidence unless someone from the local Pakistani High Commission does not categorically recieves the evidence. In two hours a staff member arrives and all the evidene is carefully loaded in a black SUV.
Watch this Youtube video of a TV show where one Peoples Party Minsiter actually says in a discussion with full confidence that corruption is ‘our right’, if the elected parties dont do corruption then its their own loss. So much for the facade of denying that any party was ever involved in corruption, might this minister and his fellow corrupt party men, want to lobby for a bill in the parliament to legalize corruption?? The answer might be a resounding yes, when everyone does it, why not legalize it, hence the people who don’t, might be better of being labelled absconders of the law. Watch this youtube video and weep, Gaad can only Bless Pakistan
Cross posted from The Laidback Show | Show notes after the jump
Pakistan Steel Mills located 40km south east of Karachi came under some serious controversies after reports continued to appear in the media in early 2009 of some serious financial problems that may have effectively left this organization in some serious debt which may actually extend to well beyond a substantial few billions, reportedly upto the tune of Rs 22 billion, if not more. The first set of reports emerged during middle half of February 2009 following which the Competition Commission of Pakistan undertook a detailed investigation and came up with some very alarming discoveries which place the Abbas Steel Group, owned by Riaz Lalji, also a close associate of Asif Ali Zardari, being interincisly involved in some serious corruption issue in the previous PPP tenures and has been labelled as “fugitives from law” in turn was a close associate of Asif Ali Zardari being solely responsible for recent recent Steel Mill debacle.
The initial set of accusations generally started off with accusing the, then Chairman of Pakistan Steel having a strong bias towards the Abbas Steel Group [ASG] accusing them of allocating all the billets being produced by Pakistan Steel Mill to be exclusively sold to the Abbas Steel Group at well below the market price while other competing vendors, who had actually made full advance payments at official market price, were left stranded and starved literally running their own factories into debt and ultimate closure.
By: Agha Haider Raza
So the National Reconciliation Ordinance (NRO) beneficiaries list comes out. The media is happy that those persons who enjoyed taking advantage of the NRO have light casted upon them, while the government is trying to push forward the argument of how they have respected the Supreme Court’s judgment and have publicized the list. It seems to be a win-win situation for all parties. But is it really? Calls for the resignation of ministries and portfolios have echoed from all corners. How has this zero-sum game turned into a finger-pointing-name-calling battle?
As we all now know, the NRO was a ‘bail-out’ for politicians and businessmen, giving them a clean sheet. This not only cleared the way for billions of rupees to be kept in the hands of defaulters, but also allowed plenty of politicians to get re-elected as their corruption charges were taken out of the court as well. Though many readers would say that I am playing the ethnic card here, I’d like to know why 96% of the beneficiaries are Sindhi’s? Secondly, if the PPP, claims itself to be a liberal-democratic party, why have they not asked for a majority vote on such a sensitive issue? After all, the billions of rupees that have been siphoned through this ordinance are Pakistani’s money, not the beneficiaries. Why should this debt be written off?
UPDATE: PkPolitics has recorded and has published the LAST EPISODE of Shahid Masood’s MERAY MUTABIQ – in this last episode he shares threats to his life with the possible reasons for having him blocked on Geo, he also sheds light on the level of corruption by the NRO – SHOCKING its a definite must watch
It seems that in a ban has been imposed on the airing of Geo News’ program ‘Meray Mutabiq’ by Dr. Shahid Masood from Dubai. According to Geo.tv sources, high government officials from Pakistan have exerted pressure on the Dubai government to block the show from being telecast from Dubai
This show along with Geo.tv has previously suffered the same fate of outright censorship in Pakistan during the 2007 martial law by Pervaiz Musharraf it was then that Pervaiz Musharraf actually approached the Dubai government too and had the entire channel taken off-air for a period of over 77 days. In those days strict local government restrictions prevented broadcast signal from Pakistan and all TV channels resorted to rebroadcasting to the satellite feed from Dubai, since the 2007 tussle with Geo and its subsequent negotiations with electronic media outlets, Geo then moved most of its operations back into Pakistan leaving aside two show Meray Mutabiq and Nadia Khan show still to be aired from Dubai alone.
The NRO mudslinging competition continues to go on, each party/individual boldly underplaying his/her own association with the controversial bill. What seriously amazes me, is that we still do not have access to the full and complete list of beneficiaries and are at the receiving end of confusing reports where the totals have seemingly fluctuated from a mere initial 600 to a now whopping 8000, seriously that’s one hell’uva discrepancy. While our two-timing politicians undermine their own headcount to say its between 34 to 300 victims, probably they hope to rely on the confusing mess to numb out the issue from the minds of the people of Pakistan. Such rampant corruption which as literally debilitated this nation, it is probably their right to know was eligible for this executive presidential pardon issued by Pervaiz Musharraf and its all the more important to know who cashed it in and what precisely was waived off, in the name of politically reconciliation.
The mudslinging is for now centered on some kingpins from the PPP but in the confusion it seems MQM is trying its damnedest to sneak under the media-frenzy hoping to walk away with mere statements like “National Accountability Bureau has no case against any MQM worker“. Karachi is a witness to the anarchy of the good ‘ol terror-filled days courtesy of the MQM. The time frame for pardoning of all criminal cases charged against them ironically range from 1986 and onwards.
It might serve us well to first look at the Section 2 of the NRO which centers exclusively around the criminal cases of the MQM
Much has been discussed about the in-famous National Reconciliatory Ordinance where 5,800 crooks were pardoned by the then President Pervaiz Mushrraf as an attempt to broker a deal for his own extended stay as the President of Pakistan. This NRO in effect opened the flood gates to allow thousands of white collar criminals and murderers to return back to Pakistan and reestablish themselves to (re)loot Pakistan yet again, and by golly in the short spam of three years they have done a brilliant job, heck third time around they went straight into business, since now these were all hardened criminals now given an executive golden key to make millions courtesy of a selfish dictator who thought his own stay in Islamabad was more precious then the country itself
The NRO was brokered in late 2007 where then we all had raised some hell about this criminal bill, but the movers and shakers of the country thought it in “their” best interest to keep this list private and extend large pardoning pleas to all the beneficiaries, be it thousands of murderers in Karachi or the ruthless Mr. 10% criminal like Asif Zardari and his team cronies, all permitted to enter back into Pakistan with a precious to-die-for get-out-of-jail-card.
Now it seems that there is an attempt to turn the tables and some movers and shakers(?) within “the establishment” think that this is now an opportune time to make this list public after almost three years. We must understand this move is definitely a serious attempt to turn up the heat in Islamabad and make all these crooks a little uncomfortable (times-up) and possibly turn the tables, making way for another set of so-called cleaner leadership to assume power, which for now mostly means the Sharif Brothers
Begging, as a profession could well compete with many others considered oldest on the list, with very similar characteristics. The first clink of coins falling in the begging bowl takes away one’s self esteem and any left over reluctance for all times to come. From here on, there is no looking back. One ceases to utilise one’s own faculties and gets hooked on to the life of easy money. More creative and unscrupulous begging techniques are devised to draw greater sympathy from the charity giver. Interestingly, few beggars have ever become rich or said good bye to beggary. It is a an addiction that even psychiatrists find difficult to deal with. Cold turkey is often the only solution.
Sixty years of begging and borrowing have reduced Pakistan to an addicted state whose claim to fame is its own self acquired helplessness. It has said good bye to its own faculties, conscience and self respect. It is willing to find a million excuses to beg , but is not willing to take a single action to reform itself. It is not willing to save billions that it looses every year on its mismanaged state-run organisations like PIA, Steel mill or Railway. It is not willing to save on its army of ministers, whose only job is to roam around in Prados sponsored by the tax payer or foreign aid. It is not willing to save on its leaders eternally performing ‘umrahs’ or doing family junkets in foreign lands. It is not willing to save on its hundreds of bullet proof cars that are imported for its worthless leaders.
Two years back in 2007 barely two blocks away from my house a powerful explosion rocked Shahrah-e-Faisal as a suicide bomber tried to attack Benazir Bhutto’s motorcade as it made its way from Karachi airport to a massive rally being held to celebrate her return to Pakistan. We all know that she luckily had survived the attack, we all know what happened after that, we all know how she sadly succumbed to another such attack two months later in December.
Now as I see this PPP government marking its presence on the streets of Karachi today I recall the words I shared in my post back in 2007 immediately after the attack – I wrote “Thank God, Benazir Lives” – two years down I get an eerie feeling to say, I was right, that there is a business of Martyrdom in Pakistani politics, and maybe these ceremonies being held today in Karachi have nothing to do with respecting the departed, but instead I fear its a celebration.
Imran Khan presents a very logical perspective as to why this Army offensive does not necessarily mean an end to this war on terror. Collateral Damage which leaves more civilians dead in its wake will most definitely create more enemies then good.
Credit: The Critic Magazine
Its a little old news but I still feel the needed to register my appreciation for the Pakistan Army when on Wednesday they refused entry / expelled / kicked out Mr. No-good Rehman Malik as he went to attend ‘a ceremony’ at the GHQ to pay homage to the army personnel who died during the siege on earlier in the week.
It was also reported in the news that initially the Minister was planning to do a grandiose press conference at the memorial, most probably to gain political mileage out of this tragedy, they proceeded to invite the press for ‘unveiling a plaque bearing the names of the slain military personnel’. But when his team got no response from the Army and the GHQ they were forced to call off the press conference and the plaque unveiling. Leaving Mr. Malik alone, twirling his thumbs ‘without protocol’ while he laid a wreath on the memorial and within three minutes he was whisked away back to the capital