Accountability court adjourns corruption hearing on Nawaz’s request

  • Nawaz Sharif asks court to suspend proceeding until IHC announce verdict in a petition to club references
  • Court adjourns hearing till Dec 4
Pakistan

ISLAMABAD – The accountability court on Tuesday adjourned the hearing of corruption references against members of Sharif family after former prime minister Nawaz Sharif pleaded the court to suspend proceedings until the Islamabad High Court rules in a petition to club references.

As Judge Mohammad Bashir resumed hearing of the cases after the arrival of Nawaz Sharif, his daughter, Maryam Nawaz and son-in-law Captain (retd) Safdar, an application was moved to suspend the proceedings. Nawaz’s counsel Khawja Harris also could not appear before the court.

On November 23, the high court had reserved its verdict on a petition by the sharif to club the references against him.

National Accountability Bureau’s prosecutor, Sardar Muzzafar, objected to Nawaz’s plea and asked the court to record the statement of the witnesses as they had appeared before the court.

However, the accountability court rejected his request adjourned the hearing till Dec 4.

On Monday, Judge Mohammad Bashir adjourned the hearing of a corruption reference against former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif until tomorrow (Tuesday) due to the absence of lawyers and witnesses amid sit-in by religious protesters in the capital city.

However, only PML-N representative Captain (rtd) Safdar reached the court. Safdar said that he could not contact anyone including the party leader.

The accountability court is hearing three references filed by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) against Nawaz and his family regarding London flats, Azizia Steel Mills ans other companies in the backdrop of the Supreme Court’s verdict in the Panama Papers case.

Nawaz and his two sons, Hussain and Hasan, have been made accused in all three references whereas Maryam and her husband MNA Capt (retd) Safdar are accused in one case regarding London properties.

At the last hearing, Nawaz and Maryam submitted the requests to the courts seeking change in their exemption period. The former premier’s daughter now seeks exemption from court appearance for a month from December 5, 2017 to January 5, 2018.

Similarly, Nawaz has asked the court to give exemption from December 5-12.

The court has not announced a decision on the pleas yet.