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CDA awarded contracts to favourite firms: probe

ISLAMABAD: The Capital Development Authority (CDA) awarded contracts to favourite firms for the renovation of the President and Prime Minister houses during the tenure of two ex-premiers from 1989 to 1996, inquiry reports presented before the Special Public Accounts Committee (SPAC) revealed.

The SPAC was apprised that contracts worth Rs49.3 million were awarded on verbal orders of the then prime ministers. “There are irregularities worth crores of rupees in credit of the civic body,” the reports said.

The CDA officials said as those were verbal orders, therefore, no record of the contracts were available with the auditor general office.

Cabinet Secretary Nargis Faiz Sethi, who was also present on the occasion, did not agree with the point of view of CDA saying the prime minister never issues any order with his own signatures rather such orders are issued by the principal secretary. “The CDA should try to improve its own record,” she said. To this CDA Chairman Imtiaz Inayat Illahi said the authority was already taking measures to make the record safe and secure.

The PAC special committee chairman also directed the CDA not to spend money on decorating the capital for the visits of foreign dignitaries.

Riaz Hussain Pirzada MNA said he never witnessed such activities in other countries when he accompanied prime ministers and presidents during the foreign visits. “There is no need to decorate Islamabad which already has its natural beauty,” he said.

The committee also noted that Zero Point inter-change has some technical flaws. He directed all the departments to initiate work on any project after comprehensive study to avoid any error or flaw in this regard. The committee also settled the issue of 100 security guards appointed in August 1992 for Bani Gala operation.

The auditors also told the committee that the CDA officials have not been able to produce any order from then Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto about allotment of 2.5 kanals agro plot to then PPP MNA Ruqqaya Khanum Soomro.

The inquiry said the allotment was made in violation of land disposal regulations. “We are searching for the record and a report will be submitted in 10 days,” CDA Chairman Imtiaz Inayat Illahi said.

Pirzada directed the CDA to contact then Principal Secretary Ahmed Sadiq to get details.

To a query, the cabinet secretary said a summary has been moved to the prime minister for recovery of Rs2.2 billion in the head of supply of water from Khanpur Dam to Rawalpindi cantonment and city.

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