Maryam Nawaz Sharif on Wednesday resigned as chairperson of the Prime Minister’s Youth Loan Programme, which she had been overseeing since November 22, 2013.
“I feel that this is an appropriate moment to hand over the resignation of the PM’s Youth Programme to another equally dedicated individual. This programme is here to stay and will touch new heights in days, weeks and months ahead; Inshallah,” said Maryam in an official statement.
Maryam’s resignation came a day after the Lahore High Court (LHC) “gave the government a chance to replace her” while hearing a challenge to her appointment filed by a Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf official Zubair Niazi. Her appointment was also challenged in the Islamabad High Court.
Sources in the PML-N said that Justice Syed Mansoor Ali Shah of the LHC would decide the case on Friday but PTI chairman Imran Khan congratulated his supporters at his Wednesday rally in a bid to influence the court judgment.
They said Maryam Nawaz submitted her resignation to protect the judiciary from criticism.
The PML-N senior leadership also expressed reservations over Justice Shah, saying that he was from the chamber of PTI’s senior leader Hamid Ali Khan and espoused the agenda of the PTI chairman. Maryam Nawaz and her six-member staff served as volunteers and did not get a single penny for running the programme, they added.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 13th, 2014.