Ex-Pakistan ambassador secretly sold embassy building in Indonesia

Islamabad/New Delhi: Pakistan’s former ambassador to Indonesia allegedly sold the embassy building in Jakarta at a throwaway price around 10 years ago.

According to media reports from Islamabad, the country’s anti-corruption body, National Accountability Bureau (NAB), on August 19 filed a reference against the former envoy, Major General (retd) Syed Mustafa Anwar, for the alleged offence committed in 2001-02.

Anwar has been accused of illegally selling the building and causing a loss of $1.32 million to Pakistan’s national exchequer, the Tribune reported.

The former ambassador, as per the documents submitted to the registrar, had issued an advertisement for the sale of the building without the Foreign Affairs Ministry’s approval.

The sale was in violation of his powers under Section 9 (A) 6 of the NAB, the reports said.

The NAB alleged that Anwar in a clandestine manner, had started the process of selling the building immediately after his appointment in Jakarta. Once the process of the sale started, he then sent the proposal to the Ministry.

The Tribune said the reference in the court read that the Foreign Affairs Ministry had banned the sale of the building without its approval in several letters.

The Pakistan Supreme Court last month held that the NAB office was responsible for delay in deciding corruption references including that against the former ambassador.

The apex court had said that the NAB officials were incompetent.

Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed had observed that NAB officers did not possess enough expertise to conduct proper inquiries and apparently there were no measures in place on the basis of which investigations were examined, the Tribune reported.

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