ISLAMABAD - Four senior officers of National Accountability Bureau (NAB) are working with the bureau in violation of rules and without the approval of the competent authority, The Nation has learnt reliably.

Sources told The Nation that four director generals of NAB were given the charge of acting DGs but they are enjoying all the perk and privileges of a permanent DG.

These officers are: NAB Lahore Bureau DG Major (r) Burhan-u-Din, NAB Khyber Pakhtunkhwa DG Major (r) Saleem Shahzad, Trainings DG Nadeem Tariq, and Awareness and Prevention DG Aliya Rashid.

They said that NAB chairman can appoint acting DG for three months which is extendable for another three months only, but all these four officers are serving as acting DGs for more than a year.

According to documents available with The Nation, the additional charge of a vacant post may be given, with the approval of the relevant appointing authority, to the senior-most employee in the cadre present at the place if he is fit and eligible.

The arrangement shall not be made for a period less than one month (and) should not exceed three months. However, it may be extended by another three months with the approval of the next higher authority; and where the chairman is the next higher authority, extension beyond six months shall require approval of the government.

Sources said that not a single case of extension of any officer who completed his tenure approached competent authority for extension, which is violation of NAB ordinance. They said that it might be possible that the chairman wanted to keep DGs of his choice and therefore he did not bother to forward their cases for extension.

Earlier this month, Pakistan People’s Party senior leader Senator Saeed Ghani had pointed out the illegalities in NAB, especially the extension of DGs, in Senate and requested the government to look into the matter while asking for amendments in NAB ordinance.

Talking to The Nation Saeed Ghani said NAB had filed several references of misuse of powers against former prime ministers Yousaf Raza Gilani and Raja Pervaiz Ashraf and other politicians and bureaucrats but its chairman was violating law by offering extension to his blue-eyed officers.

He said NAB submitted a written reply to his query that NAB chairman can only grant three month extension to any senior level officer.

He said the chairman cannot remove a permanent DG from his post before the completion of his three years at same post, therefore, the incumbent watchdog chief do not want to post a regular DG at any post.

Ghani vowed to bring this issue to the relevant Senate committee and ask the government to review the NAB ordinance and curtail the absolute powers of NAB chairman.

The NAB had specially created four DG posts in grade 21 during interim government for hiring. More than 178 persons applied against these posts, including PhD degree holders but government ignored competent candidates and hired its blue eyed.

The apex court had passed an order and instructed the incumbent government to cancel the transfers and postings and appointments made by caretaker government but the Supreme Court order was simply ignored and no action was taken against NAB officers.

When contacted, NAB Spokesman Asim Ali Nawazish said that he does not have information in this regard.