Sindh To Have Its Own Anti-Corruption Agency Law
KARACHI: The Government of Sindh, in efforts to increase the efficacy of the Anti-Corruption Establishment, has planned on introducing the Sindh Anti-Corruption Agency Act and Rules. Discourse regarding the Act was brought up during a recent anti-corruption meeting led by the Sindh Chief Minister, Murad Ali Shah. The meeting’s attendees included Chairman Anti-Corruption Establishment (ACE) Ghulam Qadir Thebo and various relevant officials. The Act aims to effectively tackle irregularities and inconsistencies regarding corruption that took birth on the inefficiency of the Anti-Corruption Establishment.
“Under the new law, an official found guilty of corruption will be suspended [at least for 10 years],” said CM Sindh. The Act and Rules extend the authority of the ACE over corruption related matters, in the sense that its provisions include many new features that were previously missing. Recovery of illegally acquired material (be it monetary gains or other) through court is one such feature. On account of corruption being proven, the accused shall also be disqualified from being elected as a member of Parliament or Provincial Assembly.
Previously, the assent of higher authorities was needed by the anti-corruption officers while taking action against corrupt officials. However, as stated by a spokesperson of the CM House, the agency will not need any higher committee’s approval while launching an FIR (first information report) against a corrupt official once the Act and Rules have been passed.
It is interesting to note that the CM brought the Eighteenth Amendment to the Constitution into discussion and proclaimed that the Amendment granted provinces the freedom to assert power over matters such as anti-corruption in any manner they deemed fit.
The meeting concluded with the CM asking Chairman ACE to forward the Act and Rules to the Law Department so they could progress further. On approval of the Department, the CM will then hold a meeting, assisted by his legal team, to work out a final version of the Sindh Anti-Corruption Agency Act and Rules.
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