LAHORE: Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) Information Secretary Fawad Chaudhry has claimed that the statement of joint investigation team (JIT) chief Wajid Zia is being distorted to give an impression that the Sharif family is not involved in corruption and money laundering.

At a news conference here on Friday, he expressed concern over the publication of what he called misleading reports about the accountability court proceedings and termed it a propaganda campaign by the government.

He said an impression was being created that Wajid Zia’s statement had given a clean chit to the Sharif family.

He said the PTI could not address the media outside the National Accountability Bureau court because it was not a party in the case and therefore had no access to the court proceedings. The Panama case had been heard by the Supreme Court for 134 days, but Nawaz could not provide money trail of his assets.

He said the JIT investigated and found Maryam beneficiary of Nielsen and Nescoll offshore companies, adding deals were struck in Pakistan, but payments made abroad.

“Maryam was receiving money from Nawaz but the source of Nawaz’s income remained unidentified,” he said and added that both father and daughter would soon be convicted.

Mr Chaudhry said Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi should not have asked the chief justice of Pakistan for a meeting.

Lauding the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) for taking a presiding officer from the court, he stressed the ECP should be strong enough so there was no need for a caretaker government.

He said PTI Vice Chairman Shah Mahmood Qureshi was in touch with the government for a caretaker set-up in Islamabad, while in Punjab opposition leader Mian Mahmoodur Rasheed was contacting all opposition parties for consultations on the set-up in the province.

He said objections were being raised by all political parties against the delimitation of constituencies undertaken by the ECP.

Published in Dawn, March 31st, 2018