On Tuesday, Justice retired Javed Iqbal, chairman of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB), dispelled the notion that the accountability watchdog was stifling investment, saying, “The NAB provides protection to people, which is why people settled abroad are sending remittances and business is flourishing in the country.” The NAB head stated at a check-distribution event in Lahore that none of the initiatives done by the body to boost the accountability process were incorrect, adding that “our exports rocketed up due to the NAB.” He claimed that casting doubt on the accountability watchdog’s operation and integrity was contrary to the facts. In response to assertions that the National Accountability Bureau only catches “small fish,” Justice (retd) Iqbal claimed the accountability watchdog had also nabbed “sharks and crocodiles.” He said that the NAB has hired a director in Islamabad to deal with company complaints within 48 hours. “There was no complaint for three months, and then one was lodged in the fourth month, which was a trivial and personal matter, yet the watchdog is still being accused of working against business.” We must be able to distinguish between legitimate businessmen and dacoits, he added, adding that “real businesspeople” have no complaints about the NAB and that if they did, “our doors are open for them.” The NAB chairman defended the plea bargain system, claiming that it was included in anti-corruption legislation in a number of nations. He went on to say that a good trade strategy was developed after contacting chamber of commerce representatives and that inexpensive gas, electricity, and a decent environment were also required for investment. According to the NAB chairman, there are currently 1,300 referrals pending in courts, including supplemental references. “There aren’t even 2% of those who are anti-business. He questioned, “How can you claim businesspeople are suffering?” He emphasised that the NAB does not have the jurisdiction to imprison anyone; such authority belongs to the courts. According to Iqbal, the NAB does not issue summonses to bureaucrats because of their “self-respect,” but instead sends them questionnaires. “I respect politicians, but it is not unfairness if witnesses make statements in money laundering instances and the NAB commences proceedings,” he continued.