Former Punjab Information Technology Board (PITB) chairperson Dr Umar Saif on Monday failed to appear before the National Accountability Bureau’s (NAB) team in Lahore that is probing the alleged irregularities in the provincial IT board.
According to reports, the accountability watchdog had summoned Dr Saif to launch an investigation into the alleged corrupt practices in PITB.
Dr Saif is accused of incurring a loss of millions to the national exchequer, reports claimed, adding that he had illegally appointed people on the basis of nepotism on important positions.
The former PITB chairperson had also been an advisor to the former Punjab chief minister. He has served as the vice chancellor of Information Technology University in Lahore.
In November 2018, the Punjab government had removed Dr Saif as PITB chairman and deputed Planning and Development (P&D) Chairman Habibur Rehman Gilani in his place.
Dr Saif was given the additional charge of PITB chairmanship in November 2011 by the government of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N). He was made responsible for all public-sector information technology projects in the province.
During his tenure as the PITB chairman, Dr Saif launched several initiatives aimed at improving citizen services for police, high-court, city district government, health and education, especially using smartphones.
He led the development of Punjab Innovation Policy in collaboration with Google and launched Plan-9, Pakistan’s first and largest public-sector startup incubator. He is largely credited with revamping the intermediate and matric exam system in Punjab, after a complete debacle of the exam system in the previous year.