Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Gulzar Ahmed has ordered the formulation of 120 new accountability courts to expedite disposal of corruption cases in the country.
The Supreme Court bench headed by the Chief Justice heard a Suo Motu notice regarding irregularities in the construction of Lakhra Coal Mining Plant.
The Chief Justice directed to set up 120 new accountability courts in the country and asked the law secretary to formulate courts with the guidance of the concerned authorities.
The court said that judges should be appointed in 120 new courts while corruption cases and pending references should be decided within three months.
The Chief Justice remarked that if the NAB reference is not decided soon, the purpose of the NAB law will be lost. 1226 references of the NAB are pending. Is the NAB serious in enforcing its law?
During the hearing, the Chief Justice said that the decision of NAB references should be taken in 30 days, it seems that it will take a century for the decision of 1226 references to be taken.
He said that NAB was not functioning, NAB references have been pending for 20 years, why decisions on these references are not being taken, why NAB should not close courts and declare NAB law unconstitutional.
Later, the court ordered the appointment of judges in five accountability courts and said that strict action would be taken if the appointment was not made within a week.
At the next hearing, the court also summoned the Attorney General, Prosecutor General, Law Secretary and sought suggestions from the Chairman NAB regarding expeditious disposal of the pending reference.
Earlier in January, the Supreme Court rejected the plea bargain offer of a citizen arrested on corruption charges and sought details of pending corruption cases and inactive accountability courts across the country.
It is to be noted that corruption is one of the major problems of the country and the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) was set up to eradicate it.
The current NAB chairman is Justice (Retd) Javed Iqbal and he has repeatedly reiterated his commitment to non-discriminatory accountability.
However, several cases are still pending in the accountability courts, while opposition parties have accused the current government of using the NAB for political revenge, a charge the government has always denied.