Abbasi, Miftah placed on no-fly list


–OGRA chief Uzma Adil and ex-MD PSO Emran Ul Haq’s names also put on Exit Control List

–Uzma Adil protests with MoI, says has already told NAB that LNG contract was given before her appointment 


ISLAMABAD: The Interior Ministry on Friday placed the names of former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, former finance minister Miftah Ismail and 17 others on the Exit Control List (ECL) on the request of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) in connection with the Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) scam.

The names of Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) Chairperson Uzma Adil, ex Managing Director Pakistan State Oil (PSO) Emran Ul Haq, Inter-State Gas Systems Pvt Ltd (ISGS) Managing Director Mobin Saulut, Shahid Islam, Aamir Naseem (OGRA Member-Gas) have also been placed on the ECL.

Uzma Adil wrote a letter to the Interior Ministry protesting the decision after she too learned of the fact on Friday.

According to the contents of the letter, Adil has informed the ministry that she appeared before NAB on April 17, in connection with the probe, and had already explained her position then.

“I have categorically explained to the NAB authorities that the license of EPTL (Engro’s Elengy Terminal Pakistan Ltd) was awarded before my joining OGRA as chairperson by the then chairman, Saeed Ahmed Khan, and the then members of the Authority,” said Adil in the letter.

She underlined the fact that she has already answered all of NAB’s queries and is currently in the process of submitting a questionnaire filled out on the same.

Adil has requested the removal of her name citing the “maligning” of her reputation and that of her position as the apex regulator of OGRA.

Ex-PM Abbasi is accused of illegally awarding a 15-year contract for a LNG terminal when he was the petroleum minister in former prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s cabinet. The case was closed by NAB in 2016 but was reopened in 2018.

Ismail is also under investigation in connection with the LNG corruption case.

The federal cabinet reportedly gave the go-ahead to place Abbasi, along with others, on the ECL in a meeting earlier this month.

A day earlier, the anti-theft watchdog summoned the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader in the aforementioned case at its Rawalpindi office.

NAB summoned Abbasi as former minister for petroleum and natural resources for recording his statement in ‘illegal’ award of the LNG contract with Qatar.

According to sources, Abbasi submitted his response on a questionnaire including, the reason of the necessity of the contract, the person who had approved the conditions of the contract, holding the ministry of petroleum while being the prime minister of the state, the number of visits to Qatar for formulating the contract.

Abbasi stated that the LNG was bought from Qatar due to energy crisis in Pakistan, and the rate at which it was purchased was lower as compared to other countries.