ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Friday addressed the nation and said that he has nothing to hide and presented himself along with his family for accountability.
“I announce to present me and my family for accountability,” the prime minister said. “I will go home if found guilty,” he added.
The prime minister said that he took the nation into confidence over Panama Papers — an unprecedented leak of 11.5 million files from an offshore law firm Mossack Fonseca — being the head of state of a democratic country.
“I had announced to make a judicial commission under the supervision of a retired Supreme Court judge. Though I wasn’t named in the revelations, being a Prime Minister of a democratic country, I considered it as a duty to clear the air.”
PM Nawaz said he will write to the Chief Justice of Pakistan for constituting a commission to probe the Panama Papers.
Government writes letter to Chief Justice of Pakistan
Minutes after PM Nawaz announced to approach the Chief Justice of Pakistan requesting to launch a probe into Panama Papers’ revelations, the government dispatched a letter in this regard.
“Judicial Commission should be formed to probe offshore companies owned by Pakistanis,” the letter said. “The commission should be formed under Inquiry Act 1956,” it added.
The letter, as advised by the prime minister himself, requested the honourable CJP to constitute the commission comprising Supreme Court judges.
It urged the CJP to head the commission on “priority basis”. The letter was sent to the Supreme Court registrar through caretaker Secretary of Law.
The News adds: In the meeting on Thursday, Federal Minister for Finance Senator Muhammad Ishaq Dar put up a report on his contacts with various groups of the opposition and threw light on their position.
He said the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and Leader of the Opposition Syed Khursheed Ahmed Shah were pressing the government for the establishment of a parliamentary committee while the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) was pleading for a commission under the Chief Justice of Pakistan.
Nawaz did not discard any proposal and asked Senator Dar to conclude his contacts at the earliest. The participants of the meeting, which continued for more than two hours, suggested different options to deal with the situation.
State Minister Aftab Ahmad Sheikh pointed out that the Panama Papers also contained the names of 255 Pakistanis and said the mechanism of investigations should also cover them.
Law and Justice Minister Zahid Hamid talked about the legal impact of different proposals and demands coming from various quarters. He dropped the hint of taking the people into confidence, which was construed as asking for fresh elections, but he made it clear that he didn’t mean new polls.
The prime minister told the meeting that he had already taken the nation into confidence through his address. He said no one will be allowed to create hurdles in the way of stability and development of the country.
He reminded that the nation was focused on economic progress and prosperity, and “we will not let anyone create any obstacle in the way”.