Syed Haider Raza Mehdi |
In recent months we have seen a plethora of actions by the Superior Judiciary and NAB in taking cognizance of an offence, conducting inquiries and investigation, conducting prosecution and convicting people.
NAB has all these powers vested in one person, the NAB Chairman.
While we have seen laudable and necessary actions both by the Supreme Court and NAB, it has also created an environment of fear, intimidation and helplessness amongst those who are clean, honest and competent, both in the public and private sectors!
Many such people have had their reputations torn to shreds, insulted and humiliated by institutions and their leaders because of unbridled power and authority vested in one person.
The old adage about power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely is very relevant in this context.
Information is deliberately leaked to the media and the media trial commences at the very early stages of taking cognizance of a potential crime, even before basic fact-finding and inquiries commence. Forget formal investigation, prosecution and conviction.
With the advent of the new administration in Pakistan, it is imperative that the NAB law is totally reviewed to ensure that while the guilty are speedily brought to justice, the innocent are not destroyed!
Pakistan today desperately needs top professional talent from the private sector who are honest and competent to become an active part of the new administration.
But such is the fear of being hauled up and made to stand like errant school children or common criminals, that many will baulk at taking up critical roles in government!
And even more importantly, honest and competent public servants will not work without fear or favor! Everyone will play safe, not take the required decisions and only cover their posteriors!
No organization or institution should have unlimited, unbridled power and authority to play havoc.
In the hands of incompetent or even competent people, such absolute power will corrupt anyone, absolutely! And corruption does not mean financial corruption.
Corruption of the ego, and misguided Jihad is far more dangerous!