ECP keeps mum on PML-N, PAS nexus


ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), despite announcing the Election Schedule 2018, keeps mum on the holy nexus of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-Z) and the powerful group of bureaucracy, the Pakistan Administrative Officers (PAS).

Source told Pakistan Today that PAS, previously known as District Management Group (DMG) officers, despite announcing the general election details, occupied the important positions not only in the federal capital but in provinces, especially in Punjab.

The caretaker prime minister on June 1, with the approval of ECP, had posted two senior officers on the important slot (SPM and secretary cabinet) but chief secretaries, IGs, RPOs and CPOs in Punjab are still intact on their positions.

Officers, on the condition of anonymity, said that ECP has to make a decision as early as possible regarding the transfer and posting of officers on important seats otherwise the nexus of PAS, PMLN can influence the elections.

One officer said that PML-N is known to have strong nexus in the bureaucracy. They have developed strong ties with bureaucrats, especially those working in the Punjab government and at the Federal government level.

There is no denying the fact that bureaucrats more close to the PLM-N are rewarded more than others. The accused in a number of NAB cases, Ahad Cheema is one example of the people who were endowed by the PML-N.

Sources close to development reveals that the chief election commissioner himself is known to have sympathies for PML N and his sons-in-law Waqas AM Mehmood and Tariq Bakshi are among those have enjoyed most lucrative posts during the entire tenure of PML-N.

Secretary Election Commission Babar Yaqoob has remained the Punjab chief secretary and secretary cabinet during the PML-N rule and is known to be a yes man, the sources added.

Maroof Afzal, known crony of the PML-N and friend of Fawad Hassan Fawad is retained as the secretary establishment. Throughout the tenure of PML-N, he has enjoyed best and most lucrative appointments such as NHA chairman, CDA chairman and secretary industries. He takes all instructions from Fawad. Maroof Afzal has appointed a BPS-18 officer Hamza Shafqaat as joint secretary establishment which is a BPS-20 seat to implement his orders on the behest of Fawad and Tahir Shehbaz, disregarding all senior officers eligible for the seat.

Appointment of Kazim Niaz, known to be very close to Fawad, as Prime Minister Office additional secretary on the last day of the PML-N government is another example of how PML-N loyalists have executed their plan. Kazim Niaz has remained in the PM Office for a long time and is a confidant of Fawad.

Jawad Paul who was Establishment Division joint secretary and Islamabad chief commissioner is presently working as the joint secretary in PM Office has not been moved despite being a true loyalist of PML-N and is considered to be the think tank of PM Office who advises on all important postings and transfers.

Among police and income tax officers, they plan to keep the same officers on the top who are known loyalists of PML-N, serving at important positions even now especially in Lahore and central Punjab particularly.

ECP spokesperson, while talking to Pakistan Today, said that ECP has called an important meeting on June 13 on the transfer and posting of offices before the election and have directed the chief secretaries and IGs to come up with officers’ details.

The chief secretaries and IGs can also be transferred as the spokesperson stated that ECP will appoint the honest officers and no one can influence ECP on the matter of transfers and postings.

Numbers of attempts were made to contact PML-N Spokesperson Marriyum Aurangzeb but no response was received till the filing of this story.