PML-N decides to give govt 'tough time' if Nawaz sentenced

Arshad Waheed Chaudhry
December 20, 2018

PML-N to initiate mass contact movement from workers convention on Dec 30, say sources

ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) on Thursday decided to start a mass contact movement and give a “tough time” to the government if the accountability court sentences former prime minister Nawaz Sharif in the remaining two corruption references against him.

Nawaz and PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif chaired a party meeting at the Parliament House today during which the court’s verdicts which will be announced on December 24 and the current political situation of the country were discussed.

Raja Zafarul Haq, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and Hamza Shehbaz were among senior party leaders who attended the meeting.

According to sources, during the meeting it was decided that if the verdict is against Nawaz then the PML-N’s advisory board will look over party matters. The advisory board will include prominent party MNAs and senators.

“If Nawaz is not sentenced then he will address the party’s Founding Day event on December 30 in Lahore and if he is then senior party leaders will address the gathering,” sources said.

“The party also decided to give a tough time to the government in Parliament and other opposition parties will be contacted in this regard,” sources added.

Further, it was decided that there will be “no compromise on civilian supremacy”. “The party will adopt a tough stance inside and outside Parliament and even start a mass contact movement from party’s workers convention on December 30,” the sources continued.

“Shehbaz after consultations will forward names of advisory board members to Nawaz for approval which will be finalised by tomorrow,” sources said.

The sources further said that Nawaz directed that party membership structure should be completed by March 23 and urged party members to stay in contact with the nation.

“Nawaz also directed that the party should be active on social media and formed a committee under the chairmanship of Marriyum Aurangzeb which will contact media and respond to the government’s propaganda on social media,” the sources said.

Addressing the meeting, Nawaz said, “I used politics as a source of service not corruption. My family and I have previously also faced accountability and were successful.”

“The nation knows the reasons behind the cases against us. All cases against us are based on assumptions and I leave my decision on God and the people,” he added.

Ahead of the party meeting, Nawaz and Shehbaz had a one-on-one meeting during which the accountability court’s verdicts in the remaining two corruption references against Nawaz and other matters were discussed.

“The brothers agreed to start a mass contact movement if the verdict is against Nawaz and to remain silent if the court’s decision is in their favour,” the sources said regarding the one-on-one meeting.

An accountability court on Wednesday reserved verdicts in the remaining two corruption references against former premier Nawaz Sharif.

The court will announce its verdicts in Flagship Investment and Al-Azizia references against the Sharif family on Monday, December 24.

The trial against the Sharif family commenced on September 14, 2017.

On July 6, after four extensions in the original six-month deadline to conclude all three cases, the accountability court announced its verdict in the Avenfield reference. Nawaz, his daughter Maryam and son-in-law Captain (retd) Safdar were sentenced to 11 years, eight years and one year, respectively, in prison.

Nawaz and his sons, Hussain and Hasan, are accused in all three references whereas Maryam and Safdar were accused in the Avenfield reference only.

The two brothers, based abroad, have been absconding since the proceedings began last year and were declared proclaimed offenders by the court.


More From pakistan