Shehbaz’s own family doubts his political stature, claims Shahzad Akbar

Published January 15, 2022
Adviser to Prime Minister on Accountability and Interior Shahzad Akbar addresses a press conference in Lahore on Friday. — PID
Adviser to Prime Minister on Accountability and Interior Shahzad Akbar addresses a press conference in Lahore on Friday. — PID

LAHORE: Adviser to Prime Minister on Accountability and Interior Shahzad Akbar has claimed opposition leader Shehbaz Sharif’s own family does not consider him a “front runner” in politics.

On the legal side, he says, Mr Sharif is also “facing humiliation” as the government agencies are actively pursuing money-laundering cases against him and have put them on the track in the anti-corruption court. He was addressing a press conference at the chief minister’s secretariat here on Friday.

Mr Akbar says the money laundering case against Shehbaz should not have gone to the banking court as it did not have jurisdiction in such cases.

“Today, the jurisdiction has been decided on the money-laundering cases with reference to the 14 benami accounts of low-wage employees at the Ramzan Sugar Mill and the case challan will now be submitted to the anti-corruption court,” he says.

He says cases of some 30 bankers have been referred to the State Bank of Pakistan as no criminal offence has been found against them except misconduct. They were unable to question directions of Shehbaz as he was chief minister then, he added.

Mr Akbar vehemently refuted claim of Shehbaz and his son Hamza that both the NAB and the FIA were pursuing the same case to “victimise” them.

Castigated Shehbaz for saying that questions about his family businesses should be asked from his sons, Mr Akbar asserted that being the (former) Punjab chief minister he should be answerable in the money laundering cases.

“Shehbaz sons’ businesses prospered, when he was the chief minister for 10 long years,” he added.

He said Shehbaz should also explain his relations with different characters including Masroor Anwar, who “used to collect money and deposit it in his accounts.”

He said serious charges of money-laundering had also been leveled against Shehbaz’s son Salman and Pakistan had submitted a request for his extradition to the UK.

Akbar says the Punjab government has constituted a medical board to examine the letters of former premier Nawaz Sharif’s physician Dr Lawrence Ramesh and determine whether Mr Sharif was getting any medical treatment.

He termed the reports of PTI leader Parvaiz Khattak confronting the premier as misreporting.

He said the FIA had taken notice and holding inquiry into the money laundering video clip of tiktoker Hareem Shah as it was a serious matter.

TARAR: PML-N deputy secretary-general Attaullah Tarar chided PM’s adviser Shahzad Akbar for his “complete failure” in establishing any corruption during the past one and a half years. He said the submission of challans and investigation reports from one court to another court showed there was nothing in the case.

“It is just ridiculous, if Mr Akbar thinks that changing of courts is a success,” he said.

He said the courts had already exonerated Shehbaz and added Mr Sharif had actually saved billions of rupees of the public exchequer.

Published in Dawn, January 15th, 2022

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