SC rejects SECP, SBP’s nominees for Panama case JIT

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Zahid Chaudhary

Islamabad

A three member special bench of the Supreme Court, constituted to oversee the implementation of Panama case verdict, on Wednesday while holding its first hearing rejected the nominations of State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) and Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) for the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) that will probe foreign business dealings of the prime minister and his sons.
The bench is headed by Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan and comprises Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed and Justice Ijazul Ahsan.
The bench summoned the SBP governor and SECP chairman, and directed the officials to send a list of all grade 18 officers.
Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan, in his comments during the hearing, said the court wants a neutral and clear investigation into the case.
“We want members of the JIT to be honest and competent,” he remarked.
Justice Sheikh Azmat noted the court would not accept any excuse or delay. “Do not try to trick us, we will select the officers ourselves,” he said.
Later, the apex court adjourned the hearing to Friday.
On April 20, a five-member larger bench of the apex court, in its verdict on the Panama Leaks case, had ordered the formation of a six-member JIT to probe corruption allegations by opposition parties against Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in the Panama Leaks case.
Meanwhile, the SC has also established a special section to help constitute the JIT. Additional registrar Mohammad Ali has been appointed as the coordinator and would be responsible for facilitating all communication between the JIT and the Supreme Court bench.
The JIT would submit its report on the progress in the probe to the coordinator every two weeks time. The JIT would consist of an FIA officer, a NAB representative, an SECP officer, a SBP nominee, and an officer from the ISI and MI. The investigation team has to complete its report and submit it to the apex court within 60 days of its formation.

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