Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Shafqat Mehmood has accused the Sharif family of lying to the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) probing the Panama Papers case. In his detailed rebuttal, Mehmood rubbished the allegations made by the prime minister’s family and his party that the formation and investigation by the JIT were conspiracies against them. “Are all firms which have provided evidence against Nawaz Sharif and his family hatching these conspiracies?” he asked during his press conference on Sunday.
The PTI leader claimed that the prime minister’s brother, Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif, had lied while recording his statement that he did not sign any contract with the Gulf Steel when in reality the contract papers carry his signature. “Is the Gulf Steel also hatching conspiracy against them?” he asked, adding that international firms had also cited many properties owned by Maryam Safdar, the prime minister’s daughter.
On July 13, amid thumping of desks by his cabinet members, the premier had categorically rejected the opposition’s demand for his resignation, saying he was brought into power by the people, and only people had the mandate to remove him. “The decisions as to who will be in power are done on heavens, while people make the decisions on ground. Should I resign on the demand of anti-democracy forces? Why should I resign, on what basis?” Nawaz said while chairing a meeting of the federal cabinet at the PM Office.
The meeting was the first sitting of the federal cabinet after the JIT investigating into PM and his children’s wealth and properties unveiled its damning report.