Sharifs staging ‘audio drama’ to hide ill-gotten wealth: PM

Sharifs staging ‘audio drama’ to hide ill-gotten wealth: PM

Terms invitation to CJP, ‘convict’ to speak at same event unfortunate Approves ERRA’s merger with NDMA

Staff Report

ISLAMABAD: Terming the alleged leaked audiotape of former chief justice Saqib Nisar a “drama”, Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that Sharif family has launched attacks on the institutions to avoid provision of money trail for their London properties to courts.
Addressing participants of the Kamyam Jawan Convention here on Wednesday, the Premier lamented that it was unfortunate that the Chief Justice of Pakistan and a “convict” were being invited to speak at the same event.
He continued that a nation was destroyed when it stopped considering looting money a bad thing. “We can see tapes surfacing, with judges being named,” he said, adding, “Let me tell you what this is about, Sharifs are resorting to attacks on institutions because they were asked to respond about the sources of their offshore wealth.”
The Premier further said: “When I stepped into politics 25 years ago, I had deemed corruption to be the biggest problem of the country.” “Nations do not become poor due to lack of resources; they become poor when PM and ministers begin to launder money abroad. They do not keep it in the country so that they can hide it from the masses,” he added. In doing so, he said, they inflict double damage to the country.
Referring to the Panama Papers leaks, PM said: “Maryam Nawaz was found to be the owner of four flats in London. “However, she was not able to put forth a single document to prove the money trail. This happened because it was stolen money,” he added.
“They lied about it in the National Assembly, followed by the fake Qatari letter and the Calibri font saga,” PM maintained. He added: “Now they also deem me to be a tyrant.”
The PM said: “I provided 40-year-old contracts related to my flat despite the fact that I was not a public office holder.” He further said, “I have no doubts in the capabilities of the nation and I am certain that we will become a great nation.”
Separately, PM gave in-principal approval to the merger of Earthquake Reconstruction and Rehabilitation Authority (ERRA) into National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA). The decision was taken at the 14th meeting of the ERRA Council chaired by the prime minister and attended by Punjab Chief Minister Usman Bazdar, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Mahmood Khan, Gilgit-Baltistan Chief Minister Khalid Khurshid, Azad Jammu and Kashmir Prime Minister Sardar Abdul Qayyum Niazi, National Assembly members Saleh Muhammad, Abdullah Khan and Chairman ERRA Lt Gen Akhtar Nawaz.
The PM issued directives to hand over 2,200 completed projects of ERRA to the concerned provincial governments and departments and for early completion of 230 under-progress projects by the year’s end. He stressed considering proper guidelines of construction in areas on geological fault lines to sustain earthquakes. He also urged promotion of tourism in areas particularly northern areas, KP, Kashmir and GB.
The meeting was briefed on the progress on New Balakot City and the handing over of unfinished projects to the provincial governments under ERRA. The PM directed to expedite the progress on New Balakot City as well as on the semi-completed projects.