LAHORE: The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) is expected to file three corruption references in the Multan Metro Bus case after seeking an approval from its executive board.
According to a NAB spokesperson, the development has come as part of the ongoing investigations into the alleged corruption in the Multan Metro project.
The references will be filed after the permission to this extent has been granted by the bureau’s executive board, the spokesperson said.
Last year, the bureau had arrested nine officials, including Multan Metro project director Sabir Khan Sadozai, executive engineers Amanat Ali and Riaz Hussain, sub divisional officers Manzoor Ahmed and Rana Wasim and Munam Saeed.
The investigation into the alleged corruption in the Multan Metro was initiated in December 2017 on the directions of NAB chairman after the Senate Standing Committee on Finance had forwarded the case to it. The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) did not provide the details of millions of dollars of the project that were illegally sent to China.
Initially, it was revealed that the money was sent to a Chinese company called Yabaite Technology Company Limited which had a link with Yabaite Pakistan Construction Group Private Limited.
The NAB collected the entire record related to the project after some resistance from the Punjab government and initially estimated that the embezzled amount was Rs2 billion.
A survey was conducted to construct 37-kilometre long route in two phases and its estimated cost was Rs35 billion. Later, it was decided that only first phase would be constructed at a cost of Rs28.37 billion but more than Rs32 billion had been spent to complete the project.
The cost of 35 articulated buses (for metro route) and 100 feeder buses (for various city routes), installation of optical fiber, elevators, lights and other components is not included in the total cost of the project but these expenses were made through the Punjab Mass Transit Authority.
Nine firms participated in pre-qualification for nine packages and it was mutually decided that each firm would get one package which was done accordingly.
Being the consulting firm, Osmani Company Private Limited did geometrical, architectural and structural design and construction supervision of the project.
In the bidding document for the procurement of consultancy service to conduct transport modeling and feasibility of mass transit system, the consultant was directed to not disclose any information relating to the project for 10 years after the expiration of the contract.