ISLAMABAD: The government has decided to send references against the Sharif brothers to National Accountability Bureau (NAB) for alleged corruption of $32 million, Interior Minister Rehman Malik informed the media on Saturday.
Addressing a press conference, Malik showed some documents allegedly revealing corruption of Pakistan Muslim League (PML-N) chief Nawaz Sharif and Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif. “Each and every booklet speaks of their corruption.”
“I want to ask you only one thing Shahbaz Sharif: Tell me where did you get this $32 million from? I will prove that this is the looted money of this poor nation,” he added.
Malik said that this was just the first episode and he will later reveal the alleged corruption in further detail.
He asked the Supreme Court to take a suo moto notice of the scam in which the precious money from the national exchequer was sent abroad.
He said that being a Minister for Interior, he could have directed the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to register a case against those involved in money laundering scams and get them arrested, but he decided to refer the case to the NAB for an independent inquiry.
However, in strange turn, the minister admitted that collecting proofs against the Sharif family’s corruption was his personal endeavour. This was the beginning and he would expose more of their corruption acts with documents in the days to come, he said.
Giving details about the scam, he said the Hudabiya Paper Mills Limited, owned by the Sharif family, entered into a leasing contract with M/s Al Towfeek Company for investment funds under the laws of the Cayman Islands on February 15, 1995 for lease of paper manufacturing machinery. The leasing price was US $12.046 million. He said Mian Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif and Mian Muhammad Abbas Sharif and another person provided guarantee in writing to pay jointly and severally to the Leasing Company all sums due against the Hudabiya Paper Mills under any agreement up to a maximum of US$10million with all profits and charges.
Rehman Malik said that on February 15, 1995, Mian Shahbaz Sharif provided another guarantee to pay on demand to the Leasing Company any such due against the Hudabiya Paper Mills up to a maximum of US$ 12.046 million together with all profits and charges.
However, the paper mill failed to make the payment on the first due date or any date thereafter, Malik said, adding on July 31,1998, M/s. Al Towfeek Company served a demand to pay a sum. However, all the three guarantors failed to honour their guarantees to make payment on behalf of their company. The Interior Minister said that on March 18, 1999, the High Court of Justice Queens Bench Division delivered a judgement, declaring them defaulters and ordered Mian Shahbaz Sharif to pay the amount to the company.
Talking about other cases, Malik mentioned the involvement of Sharifs’ in scams such as the Mehran Bank scandal and said he would soon reveal solid documents to prove their corruption. He said htat the first National Reconciliation Ordinance was introduced between Main Nawaz Sharif and former President late Farooq Ahmad Khan Leghari, and that both had benefitted from that deal due to which the government of Benazir Bhutto was dismissed.
He also mentioned the second NRO of Mian Nawaz Sharif under which he and his family were allowed ot travel to a friendly country by General Pervez Musharraf.
Malik boldly stated that when he first disclosed the agreement a few months back, no one challenged nor contacted him. The Interior Minister said Sharif brothers had also made a deal that General Pervez Musharraf would be spared.
Answering a question, the minister said it was true that he may face life threats, but “it is my commitment that I would uncover their corruption.”
He said the fifth year of coalition government of Pakistan People Party was currently underway and “I appreciate the present army leadership for its support to the promotion of democracy and democratic institutions.”
He lamented attitude of the Sharif brothers especially during last few days, saying their efforts to topple the government and to derail democracy would be countered in all terms.