UK leading publication Daily Mail apologises to Pakistani PM Shehbaz Sharif over alleged corruption allegations
LONDON - Daily Mail, a leading publication in the United Kingdom, on Thursday apologised to Pakistani Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif for levelling false allegations of corruption against him in an article published in 2019.
The lawyers of the publication told the court that the publication had withdrawn all allegations against the PML-N president and his son-in-law Imran Khan Ali.
The publication also shared a clarification on its website. "In an article concerning Mr Shahbaz Sharif entitled ‘Did the family of Pakistani politician who has become the poster boy for British overseas aid STEAL funds meant for earthquake victims’ published on 14 July 2019 we reported on an investigation by Pakistan’s National Accountability Bureau into Mr Sharif and suggested that the money under investigation included a not insubstantial sum of British public money that had been paid to the Punjab province in DFID grant aid," it wrote.
"We accept Mr Sharif has never been accused by the National Accountability Bureau of any wrongdoing in relation to British public money or DFID grant aid. We are pleased to make this clear and apologise to Mr Sharif for this error," the Daily Mail concluded.
In 2019, the British paper had alleged that Shehbaz, with the help of his family members and some close confidants, had embezzled and laundered the money out of £500million foreign aid that had been poured into Punjab for relief activities after the massive earthquake that hit the country in 2005.
The news further said, “Legal documents allege that Shahbaz’s son-in-law received about £1 million from a fund established to rebuild the lives of earthquake victims – to which DFID gave £54 million from UK taxpayers”.