NAB wants finance minister’s name on ECL, interior minister Ahsan may replace Dar

F.P. Report

ISLAMABAD: National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on Thursday recommended Ministry of Interior to place name of Finance Minister, Ishaq Dar on Exit Control List (ECL).

This recommendation has been made after issuance of non- bailable arrest warrant of Ishaq Dar, NAB announced here.

Ahsan on verge of becoming finance minister: Ishaq Dar’s days as minister of finance may be numbered as Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi is about to replace him with Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal.

“A notification in order to give additional charge of the finance ministry to Iqbal is expected to be issued shortly,” sources in the Prime Minister office told on the condition of anonymity.

Iqbal already has a lot on his plate as he is the incumbent interior minister and is also at the helm of the Ministry of Planning and Development.

Sources said the decision to replace Dar comes because he has become ineffective as a minister since the opening of the accountability reference against him after the Supreme Court’s Panama Papers judgment.

The sources said that in a recent meeting at Jati Umra, Nawaz Sharif was joined by Abbasi, and despite the latter’s persistence to get approval for the change, Sharif refused.

However, the sources maintained that after the reopening of the Hudabiya Paper Mills case, where Dar is a co-accused.

At the November 2 hearing, the accountability court approved NAB’s request to freeze Dar’s assets.

All accounts belonging to Dar, except those operated by accountant general revenue, were to be frozen after the court order.

The bureau froze the assets after its chairman ordered to do so on October 18 but it needed the court’s endorsement as according to NAB laws, the order is only valid for 15 days.

NAB was seeking the freezing of Dar’s six bank, properties and vehicles in Pakistan and the United Arab Emirates as well as investments in both countries.

NAB, in its application, had informed the court of serious apprehensions that the accused, his dependents/benamidars might dispose of, alienate, sell, create charge or change the status of the properties/investments.