Strong political will imperative to wipe out corruption: NAB Chief

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ISLAMABAD, Jun 2 (APP): Chairman National Accountability Bureau (NAB), Qamar Zaman Chaudhry, Thursday said a corruption free Pakistan would remain a dream unless people at their own refuse to accept corruption as a fact of life.

“It will remain an elusive ideal unless we generate a strong political will to wipe out corruption and raise honest public representatives who can carry out this gigantic task without any fear of high and mighty and without any favour to the moneyed and well connected,” he said.

The Chairman was addressing a seminar on “Transparency in National Projects” organized by NAB in collaboration with National Highway Authority (NHA) here.

He called upon every single member of the society to make an effort by setting personal, professional and official conduct above any type of influence and prejudice and at the same time urged intelligentsia, academia and media to sensitize people about ill-effects of corruption in the society.

“Let us demonstrate zero tolerance towards corruption. Let us say a firm, rather a thumping ‘Say No’ to Corruption,” he added.

“I believe that the most harmful consequences of endemic corruption in a society are culture of acceptance, the culture of resignation and culture of apathy,” Qamar Zaman Ch. said. Any serious effort to combat corruption must start with this realization that it is the collective social responsibility, that it would result in common good and “that we all are together in this war and we will rise and fall together,” he added.

He said NAB was determined and committed to performing its national duty with absolute objectivity, thorough professionalism, unimpeachable integrity, and without any leanings for a corruption free Pakistan.

The Chairman said corruption was endemic to mankind since the beginning of times. Greed was also a phenomenon prevalent in the society. If punitive/corrective action is not initiated at the outset, he added, greed obviously flows towards an increase in corruption.

He said lack of equity and accountability has resulted in corruption becoming a way of life over the years, unchecked corruption at various levels and tiers of the society has resulted in corrupt, flaunting their ill-gotten wealth with impunity and also trying, somewhat successfully, to silence those who undertake to enforce the rule of law.

Qamar Zaman Ch. said in corrupt societies, everyone “condemns” bribery, but everyone gives and takes bribes, because not only nothing is getting done without that, but also because nothing is being done about it.