NAB References: witnesses record statements against Sharif family

NAB References: witnesses record statements against Sharif family

ISLAMABAD: The accountability court (AC) has on Tuesday resumed hearing of mega corruption references filed against former prime minister Nawaz Sharif and his family by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) in line with the Supreme Court directive in the Panamagate case.

Nawaz Sharif, his daughter Maryam Nawaz and son-in-law Captain (r) Safdar appeared before the court amid tight security. Nawaz Sharif appeared before the court for 14th time.

The accountability court (AC) judge Muhammad Bashir heard the three corruption references against the Sharif family.

In today’s hearing, two more witnesses recorded their statements, while Khawaja Harris, the counsel of the former premier cross examined the witnesses.

While recording his statement, private bank’s regional manager operations Ghulam Mustafa said that he and bank officer Yasir Shabbir appeared before the NAB Rawalpindi on August 22, 2017.

He said that Yasir Shabbir handed over bank account and transaction details of Nawaz Sharif to the anti-graft watchdog’s investigation officer after which the investigating officer had prepared a seizure memo.

Second prosecution witness NAB Assistant Director Aziz Rehan told the court that Security and Exchange Commission of Pakistan’s (SECP) female officer Sidra Mansoor appeared before the Bureau and presented documents. The Investigation Officer also recorded her statement and received her signatures on the seizure memo.

The statement of third witness could not be recorded.

The court later adjourned the hearing till January 30 and summoned two more witnesses.

Previously, the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) had filed three cases of corruption and money laundering against Sharif, his family members and Finance Minister Ishaq Dar in the Islamabad Accountability Court following the verdict.

The anti-graft body NAB had frozen the bank accounts and seized properties of Sharif and his family members to put pressure on them to appear before the court.

The Sharifs have denied any wrongdoing and have labeled the corruption proceedings against them as politically motivated. Two of Nawaz’s sons are also due to appear before the NAB court, along with Finance Minister Ishaq Dar.

Nawaz was disqualified by the Supreme Court in July for not declaring a source of income that he disputes receiving. Pakistan’s top court also ordered a wide-ranging NAB investigation and trial into Sharif family members.

The Supreme Court specified that the trial be concluded within six months by NAB, which has in the past been derided as toothless because rich and powerful politicians were seldom convicted.