Panamagate Case: Court can summon PM if needed, bench observes
ISLAMABAD: Supreme Court of Pakistan (SC) resumed hearing of the Panamagate Case on Thursday, ARY News reported.
A five-member bench headed by Justice Asif Saeed Khosa, also including Justice Azmat Saeed, Justice Ijaz Afzal, Justice Gulzar Ahmed and Justice Ijaz-ul-Hasan, is hearing the case against the family members of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.
Jamaat e Islami’s counsel Toufeeq Asif today pleaded to the bench for summoning Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in the court. He argued that the counsels want to cross-examine Nawaz Sharif in the hearing.
The bench observed that after hearing each party the bench could summon Nawaz Sharif if required.
The JI counsel in his arguments referred the case of Zafar Ali Shah again and said that he wanted to put forth the arguments given by Khalid Anwar in that particular case.
To this, Justice Khosa observed that JI’s counsel should refer the judgement of the court instead of the arguments of lawyers.
Justice Azmat Saeed posed a question to JI’s counsel as to whom Khalid Anwar was representing in Zafar Ali Shah case.
Justice Azmat Saeed told JI’s counsel that he was referring to the case without going through its judgement.
‘You totally made joke of it, you must have read something about it’ Justice Azmat Saeed told JI’s counsel.
Justice Aijaz Ul Ahsan also observed that JI’s counsel totally made fun of the Panama case as Khalid Anwar was counsel for petitioner instead of Nawaz Sharif.
‘You are ignoring the basic principles of law’ said justice Azmat Saeed to JI’s counsel adding that you caused damage to the central point of your client.
The JI counsel said that it has been said in Zafar Ali Shah case that London flats were owned by the Sharif family. The bench observed that the bench described an alleged corruption in the case and it could not be called a decision.
In Monday’s proceeding, the bench asked the prime minister’s counsel Makhdoom Ali Khan to submit prime minister’s reply at the earliest over Jamaat-e-Islami’s deliberations.
JI’s counsel pointed out that ministers were coming to the court in a bid to defend the premier in the infamous case.
Asif reiterated that PM Sharif lied in the parliament over Panama scandal while the apex court told Taufiq Asif to complete his arguments in the next hearing before adjournment of the case on Tuesday.
Justice Khosa maintained that accusations in the case were against a family and not the government, but the entire government was trying to protect that very family.
“Accusations are not against the entire government, but the entire government is being defensive,” remarked Justice Khosa.
Justice Khosa asked politicians to have patience and wait for the verdict instead of making statements and speeches outside the court premises.
“Let the case proceed and wait for the verdict,” stressed Justice Khosa.
He added that the premier’s counsel did not mention evidence when he made arguments in the case on his turn, rather presented only legal points.
Meanwhile, a German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung released new documents on social media showing Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s daughter Maryam Nawaz as a beneficial owner of the companies in Saudi Arabia, while hearing of the Panama case was underway.
SZ Investigativ tweeted, a personal information form of Minerva Services Ltd showing Maryam as a beneficial owner which suggested family’s wealth and business spreading over 60 years as the source of wealth.
The Panama Papers Scandal
The leaked papers, comprising 11.5 million documents from Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca, exposes how some of the world’s most powerful people have secreted their money offshore, and also implicated Sharif’s sons Hasan Nawaz and Hussain Nawaz.
Three of Sharif’s four children are named in the Panama Papers – daughter Maryam, who has been tipped to be his political successor and sons Hasan and Hussain – with the records showing they owned London real estate through offshore companies administered by Mossack Fonseca.
The Panama Papers have whipped up a storm of controversy over offshore wealth, ensnaring political leaders, sports figures and underworld members across the globe in the scandal.