ISLAMABAD: Former chief executive officer (CEO) of Punjab Saaf Pani Company (PSPC) Capt (r) Muhammad Usman has been appointed as the director general of Punjab Food Authority (PFA).
According to the notification issued on Monday, “Capt (r) Muhammad Usman, a BS-20 officer of Pakistan Administrative Service (PAS) awaiting posting in services and general administration department of Punjab government is hereby posted as Punjab Food Authority director general with immediate effect against a vacant post, relieving Asif Lodhi of additional charge of the post.”
Usman had resigned from the post of PSPC CEO on August 9.
Being currently investigated by National Accountability Bureau (NAB) as part of an inquiry into the assets of heads of public companies in Punjab, Usman remained very close to former Punjab chief minister Shehbaz Shareef during his tenure in government. He was holding the charge of Lahore deputy commissioner when the Model town carnage took place.
As a CEO of Punjab Saaf Paani Company, the officer was drawing a salary of Rs1,465,000 per month.
In his last appearance before the Supreme Court on July 24, Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar had inquired if the salary drawn as the PSPC head was returned or not. To this, Usman’s defence counsel had replied that his client not only has a clean record of service but is also free of any corruption allegations.
In 2017, NAB had launched an investigation into 56 public sector companies formed by Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Shehbaz Sharif’s administration in Punjab for their alleged involvement in corruption.
The PSPC along with other companies under investigation are accused of irregularities, recruitment in violation of procurement rules and merit, nepotism and non-completion of various projects in time.
It is pertinent to mention here that the PSPC had taken Rs4 billion from the provincial exchequer but did not provide a single glass of clean water.
It is pertinent to mention here that former PSPC director Qamarul Islam and former CEO Waseem Ajmal are the accused in scam worth billions and are under judicial remand.