Nawaz advised Maryam to appear before court despite ‘serious reservations’

The former PM told his daughter that her appearance is important to ‘expose the hollowness of the so-called accountability’

Murtaza Ali Shah
Wadood Mushtaq

LONDON: Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif asked his daughter Maryam Nawaz Sharif to appear before the accountability court despite having serious reservations about the entire process aimed at him and his family.

Maryam Nawaz was against the idea of her father’s appearance before the court stating that there was no hope for justice under present circumstances and had made her views known publicly about the highly controversial accountability proceedings, but the former premier asked her to appear before the court in order to “expose the hollowness of the so-called accountability process,” said a source, who is aware of the discussions that took place prior to Maryam Nawaz’s departure to Pakistan ahead of her appearance before the NAB court, scheduled for Monday.

The source told that it’s view of the entire Sharif family, their legal team as well as their supporters, the legal fraternity and sections of opposition that Nawaz Sharif has been victimised and the courts are being used to punish him, and that the whole accountability process is a “sham process that’s a revenge project and lacks even remote connection with fair accountability”.

He shared that the legal team of Sharif family also advised that Maryam Nawaz and Captain (retd) Safdar should appear before the court, while it didn’t expect fair trial because of the fact that all rules have been set aside to place a “monitoring judge” on top to “influence the desired outcome”.

Sharif’s legal team as well as top legal brains of Pakistan are of the unanimous view that appointing a Supreme Court judge to monitor a NAB court, setting a tight schedule ahead of Senate elections in March next year and general elections a few months later, fast forwarding all the rules and using covert and overt tricks to pressurise and influence courts through various means is part of the political witch-hunt and not accountability.

“Nawaz Sharif knows that he was targeted under the guise of Panama leaks and ousted on the basis of Iqama, his fundamental rights were violated, fair trial was denied to him and now fair trial not possible under the monitoring judge. But he will not shy away from appearing before the courts to expose the fraud that’s taking place in the name of accountability,” said the source.

On Sunday morning, Maryam Nawaz Sharif and her husband Captain (retd) Safdar left for Pakistan via Qatar Airways to appear before the court.

Speaking exclusively to Geo News outside Avenfield apartments, Maryam Nawaz said the so-called accountability process underway for the last year-and-a-half has been exposed as the world is aware now that this [corruption cases] is not for justice but for revenge. “The whole world knows that what’s happening to Nawaz Sharif is not accountability but revenge and the whole charade stands fully exposed.

“However, we are going back and will appear before the court and get through the wheels of justice. We respect the rule of law and the constitution,” she said, adding that when one’s intentions are clear, he or she isn’t afraid of going anywhere.

When asked whether Hasan and Hussain Nawaz will also appear before the NAB court, Maryam said the decision was for them to make.

Commenting on Nawaz’s recent re-election as the head of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), Maryam said, “It is surprising that those who have nothing to do with the PML-N are raising objections about Nawaz Sharif becoming the party president. No one should have any issue with him being in that position. God has given him a respectable position that politics revolve around him, whether he was in government as prime minister or now out of government. The PML-N has a democratic right to elect as its president whoever it wants.

She added: “God willing, the 2018 elections will be held on time and a democratic government will complete its tenure and pass on the baton to the next.”

Speaking to Geo News, Captain (retd) Safdar said they have held legal consultations with their lawyers and everything is finalised in this regard. “We will face courts and not run away,” said the National Assembly member from Mansehra.

Maryam and Safdar face a corruption reference related to the Sharif family’s Avenfield properties in London.

Her brothers and father, however, face a total of three cases, including the Avenfield case, filed by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) in an accountability court.