LAHORE: PML-N Secretary General Ahsan Iqbal says the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has opened a ‘dormant’ inquiry against him on the order of Prime Minister Imran Khan after the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) refused to follow his (premier’s) direction.

“I have already submitted my reply in response to NAB’s inquiry in the affairs of the Narowal Sports Complex project after which the bureau did not bother me for further query. But since Imran Khan faced refusal from FIA’s former head to initiate any investigation against me, he pressurised the NAB to reopen a probe (of the Narowal Sports Complex) against me,” Mr Iqbal told Dawn on Saturday.

A NAB team launched this project’s physical verification and stayed in Narowal for a few days. Seeing the mood of the PTI government, Mr Iqbal was advised (by his friends) to seek bail in this regard.

“I will not seek bail in the face of the NAB investigation (against me). I challenge the NAB to prove whether my assets in 1993 when I became an MNA for the first time increased. Today my assets are less than that of 1993. I sold my property to do politics,” he said, adding that he would continue facing fascism of Imran Khan as jail threats could not silence him.

In his reply to the NAB, the former interior minister said the scope of the project broadened because the number of seats for cricket and hockey stadium had been increased.

Besides, he had nothing to do with its funding as the sports department and the ministry of inter-provincial coordination should be quizzed in this respect. The project was approved in 2009 by the government of Yousuf Raza Gilani, he added.

Ahsan Iqbal believes that the bureau should initiate investigation against the PTI government for delaying this project that enhanced its cost. “This is a perfect case to pursue against this inept government which in its hatred and vengeance against the PML-N ruined this project aimed at providing a state-of-the-art sports complex for the people,” he said.

Published in Dawn, December 15th, 2019