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Saturday, September 17, 2011

CHARIMAN SECP SURVIVING WITH SECP's 9 MILLION.

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The Supreme Court (SC) on Tuesday again issued notice to the Federal Secretary Finance to appear before it with a concise report on appointment of Chairman of Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP), and five others respondents were also directed to submit a comprehensive statement of facts within fifteen days.

A three-member bench headed by Justice Mian Shakirullah Jan was hearing a constitutional petition filed by Muhammad Ashraf Tiwana through Advocate Supreme Court Afnan Karim Kundi under Article 184 (3) of the Constitution of Pakistan. Senior Advocate Supreme Court Sheikh Akram represented the Chairman and all other office-bearers of SECP involved in the case during the hearing.

Tiwana had filed the petition on August 23, making Federation through Secretary Finance Division, Ministry of Finance, SECP through its Chairman, Chairman Security and Exchange Policy Board (SEPB) who is Secretary Finance Division, Muhammad Ali Ghulam Muhammad Chairman SECP, Tahir Mehmood Commissioner (Company Law Division) SECP and Bushra Aslam SECP's Director Human Resource Department as respondents.

The petitioner contended that appointment of SECP Chairman Muhammad Ali Ghulam Muhammad was a sheer violation of law, equity, justice, fairness, public policy and ultra vires of the law, Constitution and principles of natural justice.

The petitioner pleaded that appointment of those individuals as Commissioner or as SECP Chairman who were or have been members of stock and commodity exchanges, brokers, directors and /or shareholders of brokerage companies is against the law.

The petitioner also requested to strike down some clauses of the SECP Act including sub-section (5) of Section 5 of the SECP ACT as it was being ultra vires to Articles 73 and 75 of the Constitution of Pakistan. Tiwana contended that Federal government be directed to introduce necessary amendments in the existing SECP Act and the new SECP Bill pending in the Parliament to prohibit the appointment of individuals with conflict of interest as Commissioners and Chairman of SECP in future should also ensure the avoidance of Regulatory Capture of SECP in line with best international practices.

The petitioner further requested to strike down those sub clauses from SECP Services Rules which he claimed were ultra vires of Articles 4, 9, 10A, 14,18 and 25 of the Constitution and in contravention of Section 23 of the Contract Act 1872 and Section 24-A of the General Clauses Act.

It was also stated in the petition that SECP and Secretary Finance Division who is the Chairman SEPB be directed to ensure that SECP Service Rules are appropriately amended to afford its employee security of tenure and the benefit of procedural due process as required by the Constitution and principles of natural justice.

The petitioner prayed that Chairman of SECP and Chairman of SEPB decision to abolish the Law Division of SECP be declared illegal for being mala fide against public interest and for violating Section 21 of the SECP Act. The Court adjourned the hearing for 15 days.

The Chairman's profile as mentioned in SECP's website: http://www.secp.gov.pk/CS/cs_chairman.asp is being reproduced hereunder for readers' review:

Mr. Muhammad Ali was appointed Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) on December 24, 2010. He has an extensive and diversified corporate and financial markets experience spread over 20 years.
An MBA from the Institute of Business Administration (IBA), University of Karachi, Mr. Ali is a well-known professional and entrepreneur. He started his career with Citibank and moved on to Smith New Court Securities in London. In 1994, Mr. Ali finalized a joint venture with Indosuez W.I. Carr Securities (Asian brokerage arm of Credit Agricole Indosuez) and led Indosuez W. I. Carr Securities, Pakistan for six years. During his tenure as CEO, the company became one of the largest and the best rated brokerage houses in Pakistan, attracting one of the highest levels of foreign portfolio investment in the country’s equity markets amongst all market intermediaries. Mr. Ali also led the expansion of W.I. Carr’s business activities to Bangladesh and finalized group’s strategy for Middle East and North African markets.
Mr. Ali then changed his focus to private equity investments and setting up of new businesses. He has been the driving force behind the creation and success of various companies in Pakistan, Middle East and North America in financial, real estate development, information technology and digital content management sectors. Mr. Ali was responsible for idea generation, planning, funding and setting up of these businesses.
Mr. Ali has also served as a Director on the Boards of reputable companies like Engro Corporation Limited, Karachi Stock Exchange (Guarantee) Limited, Dawood Bank Limited, etc.

It has been learnt through the resources that the Chairman has given Rs.9,000,000/- as case fee to a renowned layer Mr. Akram Sheikh to represent him in the Supreme Court of Pakistan against the above said writ petition. The fee has been endorsed from the pocket of SECP instead of himself.

It is further learnt that Ms Bushra Aslam who is currently Head of Admin Department is very close to the Chairman and she is believed to be an apple of Chairman's eye.

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