PESHAWAR: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Chief Minister Mehmood Khan on Monday said that he has been given a “clean chit” by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) over allegations of misappropriation of land that was leased out in Malam Jabba, Swat, for development of ski resorts.
The KP CM appeared before accountability officials in Peshawar in connection with the case.
While talking to media, he claimed that this was his “first and last appearance before NAB” in relation to the case. Mehmood Khan elaborated that he was only summoned given that he served as the KP sports, culture, tourism and museums minister at the time the decision to lease the land occurred.
“I was not aware about the lease nor had I signed any order allowing the lease,” he added.
The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader also defended the move to lease the land.
It was revealed in January this year that the KP government had leased 275 acres of land in the region instead of the original plan of leasing only 17 acres. The KP Forest Department owned the lands that were leased out to a private company for a period of 33 years even though original plans mandated a lease for 15 years. This was deemed to be in violations of rules and regulations.
KP Ehtesab Commission and the inspection team of the KP chief minister had also raised objections against the agreement at the time.
In January this year, NAB Chairman Justice (r) Javed Iqbal had directed the anti-graft body to initiate a probe into the matter.