ISLAMABAD - President Asif Ali Zardari on Sunday recommended the name of Admiral (r) Fasih Bokhari for the post of National Accountability Bureau (NAB) chairman, but the opposition PML-N rejected it out of hand. The president sent separate letters to Leader of the Opposition Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan and Leader of the House Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani for their approval, as consensus on a name for the top NAB slot is a constitutional requirement after the 18th amendment. PML-N Information Secretary Mushahidullah Khan rejected the nomination of the former admiral, saying some impartial person with unblemished past is supposed to hold the office. Although Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khans opinion is not likely to be different, the nomination of Admiral Bokhari would stand formally turned down only when the Leader of the Opposition rejects it after receiving the presidents letter. Admiral Bokhari is a retired four-star naval officer and served as Chief of Naval Staff of the Pakistan Navy from 1997 to 1999. He is a graduate from the French Naval War College and has served on several high posts during his tenure at the Pakistan Navy. The tug-of-war between the ruling PPP and the opposition PML-N on this issue will further delay the appointment of NAB chairman, in whose absence the process of accountability has already come to a halt for the past several months. Legal experts are of the view that so far no serious efforts have been made by the government to fill the vacancy. They say mere nomination of someone for the post is not enough. They think the government has to appoint the NAB chairman in light of the Supreme Court judgment. Senior lawyers Akram Sheikh and Dr Khalid Ranjaha while talking to TheNation said: Just recommending the name of someone is not enough, as the federation in light of the Supreme Court verdict has to appoint the chairman in accordance with the National Accountability Bureau (Amendment) Ordinance, 2002. This Ordinance provides for the appointment of NAB chairman by the president in consultation with the Leader of the House and the Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly. In Al-Jihad Trust and some other cases the apex court had held that a consultation has to be effective, meaningful, purposive, consensus-oriented, leaving no room for complaint of arbitrariness or unfair-play, while in the Sindh High Court Bar Association vs Federation of Pakistan the Sindh High Court had held that for a consultation to be meaningful and purposive an attempt should be made to reach some consensus. The Supreme Court on October 4, 2011 rejected the government request to extend the deadline for the appointment of the NAB chairman until the review plea in Deedar Hussain Shah case was settled. In May, the SC had given a months time to the government for the appointment of NAB chairman and the prosecutor general. The deadline ended on June 21. On July 20, the additional attorney-general filed a petition under Rule 2(14) of Order to seek extension in the time for the implementation of the court order. After the dismissal of Deedar Hussain Shah as NAB chairman the deputy chairman was performing the functions of the head of the watchdog body. But Al-Jihad Trust filed a case against it and prayed the court stop deputy chairman from performing the functions of the chairman. According to the apex courts June 21, 2011 judgment, after the dismissal of federal governments application, NAB has practically ceased to exist or function under the National Accountability Ordinance, 1999.