Influential bureaucrats posted to lucrative offices in massive shake-up


LAHORE: With the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) approving a massive administrative reshuffle in Punjab, Sindh and Balochistan to ensure transparency in the forthcoming polls, influential bureaucrats have been posted to lucrative offices after they made use of their political influence, Pakistan Today has learnt.

Sources informed that Ghulam Saghir, former staff officer of Hamza Shehbaz was posted as Chakwal deputy commissioner, Chief Minister’s Office additional secretary Zahid Saleem was posted as Archaeology director general and special secretary to the governor, Wasif Khursheed, was posted as Punjab Agriculture Department secretary. They further told this scribe that some influential bureaucrats of the Shehbaz Sharif-led Punjab government were still on their posts and had not been transferred.

Prosecutions Secretary Ali Murtaza and Industries Secretary Mujtaba Paracha were on their posts and had not been transferred. Khawaja Imran, the cousin of former Railways Minister Khawaja Saad Rafique had not been transferred either and was still posted in Punjab on an administrative post despite being an officer of Pakistan Postal Service.

Huda Gohar, a spokesperson of the Election Commission of Pakistan (Punjab Chapter) said the administrative reshuffle had been made to ensure transparency in the elections and ECP did not come under any influence.

“ECP will transfer any officer who is holding a lucrative post on the basis of his or her political connections or lobbying. Whenever and wherever any such thing is observed or any officer is seen affecting the election process, he or she will be shifted,” said the spokesperson.

However, she said ECP would not transfer bureaucrats on its own immediately. “The commission would make an administrative change only where the people or any political party complains of any such thing. ECP will investigate and recommend the caretaker government to replace the officer,” she clarified.

It merits mention that ECP on Wednesday recommended shuffling officers to the caretaker federal and provincial governments.

Earlier, the Punjab government had sent lists of bureaucrats and police officers performing their duties in the province. It had recommended that services of some officers be surrendered to the federal government and others be shuffled within the province.


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