PESHAWAR - Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Pervez Khattak has decided that the officials working in the Anti-Corruption Establishment (ACE) on deputation basis would not be inducted. They will be repatriated to police and other parent departments as soon as fresh professionals would be employed for which approval for creating 197 new posts has also been granted by the meeting.

The ACE has also been directed to avoid harassing the public servants and uphold respect and dignity of them during investigation and inquiry process as any kind of harassment could harm motivation and other working traits of the government functionaries, the meeting observed.

The Parliamentary Secretary for the ACE and Chief Minister Inspection Team, Dr Haider Ali, Special Assistant to the CM on Planning & Development, Mian Khaleequr Rahman, Chief Secretary Amjad Ali Khan, Secretary Home Department, Arbab Muhammad Arif, Director ACE, Ziaullah Toru and concerned officers of Finance, P&D and other departments also attended the meeting.

The meeting held detailed discussion to explore ways and means for making the ACE more strong, independent and effective department to check corrupt practices in the government departments and took various important decisions in this respect.

Considering a proposal about grant of rewards and incentives to the officials of the ACE on the pattern of NAB, FBR or the forthcoming Whistle Blower Act of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government, it was decided in the meeting that 25 per cent of the embezzled or misappropriated amount so recovered would be given to the concerned officials. However, the finance department was directed to review fixation of an upper limit for such awards.

The meeting also approved provision of vehicles and uniformed dress for the ACE officials. However while discussing pros and cons as well as the legal provisions about arming the ACE personnel, it rejected the proposal and assured that police shall provide full assistance to the ACE for its operations.

Chief Minister Pervez Khattak on this occasion assured his full support to the ACE for pursuing the provincial government’s resolve for undermining corruption from government departments in letter and spirit. Vowing to make the ACE a fully independent and special force to check corrupt practices, he said that required parliamentary support would also be extended to the departments including the ACE for their smooth, efficient and transparent functioning.

He urged the ACE to ensure transparency in the inquiry process and aggrieved parties must be given sufficient opportunity of defence. He advised that the ACE, concerned and third department in a bid to ensure transparency and fair play, should conduct all inquiries jointly. Supporting hiring of permanent core staff for the ACE, he directed to repatriate the deputation official who cannot be inducted under the rules.