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Leader of Opposition, Syed Khursid Ahmed Shah.     — File photo
Leader of Opposition, Syed Khursid Ahmed Shah. — File photo

ISLAMABAD: The main opposition Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) has rejected the government’s explanation that it has received $1.5 billion from Saudi Arabia as a gift and alleged that the government is hiding facts from the nation.

“It is the biggest gift in the world’s history and should be included in the Guinness Book of World Records,” said the leader of opposition in the National Assembly, Syed Khurshid Ahmed Shah, while talking to reporters at his Parliament House chamber on Tuesday.

“One has to tell 100 lies to hide one,” he said and urged Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to tell the truth in a session of parliament.

Mr Shah said that contradictory statements coming from different government circles were creating doubts about the official claim that the money had been received as a gift. On one hand, he said, the government claimed to have received such a big amount as a gift and, on the other, a minister had stated that Saudi Arabia had released the money on personal surety of the prime minister. “Gifts are not given on someone’s surety.”

He criticised Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan for his “misleading and irresponsible statement” on the floor of the National Assembly that district and sessions judge Rafaqat Awan had been killed by his own guard during a terrorist attack on Islamabad courts earlier this month.

The PPP leader said that an inquiry report on the court attack suggested that the judge had been killed by terrorists and not the guard. He asked the minister to explain whom he had supported and served through his statement. “It is now up to him (the minister) to make a decision about himself over this act,” he said while indirectly calling for his resignation.

About the appointment of chief election commissioner (CEC), Mr Shah said that the government had accepted his proposal to appoint retired Justice Rana Bhagwandas and even a bill had been passed by the National Assembly. But due to some misunderstanding, the bill was referred to a committee when it was taken up by the Senate.

He said that he had asked the government to either wait for the committee’s report on the bill or propose three new names for the CEC office. He said that the government had yet to respond.

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Comments (13) Closed

Sajjad Ali Gopang Mar 19, 2014 12:55pm

It looks so clear that there are some hidden fact behind such huge amount. If KSA has such love with Pakistan so what about those Pakistani KSA prisoners. why KSA is not handing over those to Pakistan?

munir Mar 19, 2014 04:24pm

1,5 billion for a few thousand Anza and Baghter Shikan delivered to a warehouse in Jordan... And probably some to counter Iran so its not commercially and militarily dangerous to KSA or other neighbors. Pretty simple yet difficult to swallow for those that sell their soul.

Azmat Khan Mar 19, 2014 04:29pm

There is something wrong at the bottom.The previous govt. had multiple problems. financial and others but no such a gift was ever given to them as then KSA did not expect any secret benefits in return.KSA has its ax to grind

gangadin Mar 19, 2014 04:30pm

Being a leader of opposition, you can criticize the government but what's your alternative theory about all this? Are you going to come up with plausible explanation as to why Sharif Government would be trying to mislead every one?

Nizamuddin Ahmad Aali Mar 19, 2014 08:05pm

When Mr. Jinnah was offered the job of governor of Bombay for quitting the Muslim League / Pakistan independence movement during the independence movement. His answer was simple and firm, " My soul is not for sale ". Mr. Nawaz Sharif has sold nation's soul just to please a dictatorial kingdom. The money is for arms, stinger type missiles, army soldiers and killers for Bahrainis who are demanding their God given rights. What a shame to kill and destroy innocent people, no matter who they are just to please for few bucks. Mr. Sharif has accumulated enough wealth in Pakistan and the Pakistanis are asking him in the name of The God Almighty to serve the people selflessly. He should remember those who perished without any traces and their children are living with disgrace.

haris Mar 19, 2014 09:05pm

@gangadin: Yes, there is... KSA wants militants to be trained in Pakistan and sent to Syria to fight against Bashr al Asad.

PS:I am neither Asad's supporter nor do I favor the militant groups fighting against Bashr's regime. But my concern is Pakistan should not get involved in the conflict.

zafars Mar 19, 2014 09:32pm

Its not the biggest gift, not even close much, much larger ones have been gifted in the name of philanthropy. I wish our politicians would be less hyperbolic.

malick Mar 19, 2014 10:24pm

Nawaz Sharif did not learn, and will not learn, because he is mind holder.

Ganga Din Mar 19, 2014 10:54pm

@haris: I wish it was that simple. You are trying to drag the discussion into broader Shia/Sunni conflict but I was just concentrating on the hypocrisy of PPP honchos as if they have never done any dirty work for KSA. The difference is that money was kept secret and went directly into Zardari' Swiss account. Zardari is a convicted criminal and has served jail time. Shia/Sunni conflict will end with demise of one party and unfortunately, in this case it will be Bashar Al-Asad.

kamran wazir Mar 20, 2014 12:43am

Mr Syed Khurshed Shah I am in complete accord with you.

amjad ali Mar 20, 2014 01:58am

ppp leader do not know how to lead country with good governance they just belive in corruption and critisim we have very bad previous experience of ppp govt.

John Mar 20, 2014 08:17am

Syed Khurshid Ahmed Shah obviously has no knowledge of the world beyond his bubble of Pakistan. Warren Buffett and Bill Gates alone have given as gifts (donation) over $30 billion and $11 billion respectively to Gate's charity, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

KHK Mar 20, 2014 09:45pm

@Sajjad Ali Gopang: Because they are criminals, and had committed the crime in that country.