Country’s prosperity close to my heart: Nawaz

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Nisar assures PM will return from London soon

Observer Report

London/ Islamabad—Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif arrived in London on Wednesday for medical treatment over a previously unknown heart condition, officials said.
Talking to media Nawaz said his government was committed to fast track development and prosperity of the country.
He said when PML-N was in opposition it never did such politicking of bringing down the elected governments and never supported such steps which could have weakened the democratic system.
“The prosperity of country is closer to my heart. I want development and progress of the motherland only and never compromised over these objectives by seeking power,” he added
Nawaz has been under tremendous pressure from opposition parties to step down since his family members were named in the mass leak of offshore account data from the Panama firm Mossack Fonseca.
Sharif’s son Hussain Nawaz has owned offshore companies and one of the most expansive Mayfair London properties. One of his offshore accounts in the data is worth of 5.5 million British pounds, or about $7.8 million.
Interior minister, Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, sought to assure the public Wednesday that Sharif will return in a few days.
The prime minister had an intervention on his heart some years ago that went “terribly wrong,” Nisar told re-porters in Islamabad.
It was the first time that Sharif’s heart condition was disclosed, though there were no details on the nature of the condition. Nisar said that since the surgery, Sharif has had heart problems.
After the Panama Papers leaks scandal erupted, Sharif insisted in a televised address to the nation that all of his family businesses were legal.
But PTI chief Imran Khan has demanded an unbiased probe into the wealth the Sharif family had amassed. On Wednesday, he asked the government to set up a commission headed by a serving Supreme Court judge with ex-perts on white-collar crimes as members.
If the government fails to do this, Khan’s party will march on Sharif’s palatial farmhouses in the eastern city of Lahore he warned.
“They steal money and then they stash this money in foreign accounts,” Khan alleged.
The interior minister, said the government was already working to set up the commission.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Wednesday departed for London for a routine medical check-up, which was repeatedly postponed due to his official engagements over the past few months.
According to the premier’s spokesperson, Nawaz Sharif will undergo a detailed medical check-up, which ow-ing to his national engagements was postponed repeatedly.
However, sources in the ruling party said the PM was suggested to spend a week in London to relieve his ‘stress and anxiety’ because of the situation developed after Panama leaks. “PM Nawaz will also spend time with his children in London,” the source added.
The PM would spend the week with his children at his London residence, sources said, adding the PML-N was unhappy of his decision to address the nation on the issue of Panama Papers. It was, however, suggested by daughter Maryam Nawaz to clear his position in public.
A massive leak of 11.5 million tax documents on April 3 exposed the secret offshore dealings of world leaders and celebrities, also naming three of the premier’s children for owning London real estate through offshore com-panies.
The premier’s visit comes after Finance Minister Ishaq Dar cancelled his visit to the United States on the in-structions of PM Nawaz. “In view of the prime minister’s programme to proceed to (the) United Kingdom for medical check-up, I have decided not to proceed to Washington to attend the Spring meetings of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF),” Dar said in an official handout issued on Tuesday.
On Tuesday, Senator Aitzaz Ahsan claimed that Premier Nawaz, who is flying to London ostensibly for ‘rou-tine medical check-up’, would, in fact, meet Asif Ali Zardari to seek his support. “Nawaz Sharif is going to Lon-don to pay a visit in the court of Asif Zardari,” he told journalists outside the Parliament House. However, he warned that if his party bailed the prime minister out, it would suffer politically. “I will convey my views to PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto and Co-Chairman Asif Zardari,” Senator Aitzaz added.
A spokesperson for Nawaz Sharif was quick to rebut the claim. “The prime minister did not express his desire to meet the PPP leadership during his upcoming London visit,” Mussadek Malik said in a statement. No such meeting is scheduled, he added.

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