The stage is set to hire a blue eyed bureaucrat son as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Punjab Board of Investment and Trade (PBIT) – one of the lucrative posts in the public sector companies of the province.
Son of a Secretary Communication and Works (C&W) Department Mian Mushtaq is currently serving the provincial government bosses on all instruction with yes as a reward for the CEO PBIT position. However, an eyewash hiring process is underway to show the process is transparent.
This exposes the claim of the good governance by the Chief Minister Punjab who always claims it at every forum in the province.
A tailor made advertisement is published to cater an already selected candidate. In the first notice published in December 2016, minimum 16 years of experience in private and public sector at international, national or sub-national level with minimum five years of experience in a leadership role.
In the March 2017 advertisement for the post, the experience is reduced to 7 years only ( more than half of the previous criteria) along with a preference to those candidates who have prior experience in investment banking, direct investments, corporate governance and equity financing while no such preference was given in the earlier advertisement. Another characteristic added in the new advertisement is that candidates have through understanding of the investment climate of Pakistan.
Interestingly, the new advertisement is not available in the PBIT website while old one was on the site.
The Chief Minister of Punjab, Shahbaz Sharif who is chairman of the PBIT and heading the Board of Director of PBIT is likely to chair a board meeting in the next week in which approval will also give for it. As the new BoD of PBIT is constituted and it would be the first session of the newly constituted Board.
Secretary Industries, Commerce, and Investment (ICI), Dr. Mujtaba Piracha said that experience limit was revised downwards to encourage the young local and overseas Pakistanis to provide them opportunities. Young people are relatively much energetic and with ideas as compared to the older one who already spends ample of their life abroad and planning to settle their retirement back to Pakistan show their interests in such positions.
On a question the advertisement is tailor made to appoint a senior bureaucrat serving as a secretary in the provincial government, he said that everyone is given equal opportunities and reduction in experience will not benefit to someone individual.
Whether it is PBIT; a state regulatory body or Chamber of Commerce a representative of industrialists transparency seems quite absent.