Ijaz likely to record his statement before memo commission today


Both the fate of the government and the credibility of the star witness in the memo scandal, Mansoor Ijaz, depend on what is being described as a make-or-break statement he is likely to record before the memo commission from the Pakistani High Commission (PHC) London via video link today (Wednesday).
Ijaz would lose credibility if unable to perform at this critical juncture while the government’s fate is also partially linked with the outcome of the key statement.
All is set to record the statement of Ijaz but keeping in view his ‘somersaults’ so far, it still remains a valid question whether he would appear before the commission today.
Zahid Bukhari, the counsel for Husain Haqqani, when contacted told Pakistan Today that he received his passport from the UK embassy at 2pm on Tuesday. “It was impossible for me to reach London in time,” he said.
He said he had written a letter to the memo commission secretary on February 15, seeking his help for getting visa. “But even after the all out efforts of the Foreign Office and the attorney general, I was able to get my passport back on Tuesday,” he said.
Asked if he would object to Ijaz’s statement when he would not be there to cross-examine him, he said, “I will ask the commission to record the statement per law and that he should be given opportunity of cross-examining.”
With all technical arrangements in place, memo commission already in London and Bukhari ‘unable’ to proceed abroad for cross-questioning Ijaz, Wednesday’s hearing would also set the future course of proceedings.
The government has made all necessary arrangements for recording Ijaz’s statement with LCD screens installed at the Islamabad High Court (IHC) and PHC London.
The commission would meet at the IHC at 2pm and proceed further into the probe pertaining to the memo allegedly written on the advice of Haqqani and delivered to the top US military officials.
During the last hearing, the commission had decided to record Ijaz’s statement from London via video link after he declined to visit Pakistan due to security concerns. The commission had allowed the respective counsels to be present either at the Islamabad High Court or PHC London for cross-questioning Ijaz. However, Bukhari was unable to proceed abroad due to delay in getting visa.
Having denied the charges leveled by Ijaz, Haqqani has so far been unable to produce his two official Blackberry sets before the commission, which the inquiry tribunal believed were vital part of the evidence to establish link and its nature between Haqqani and Ijaz.
In a statement made before the commission, Haqqani said the Blackberry sets were missing since he left the US. He had also declined to waive his privacy rights with the Research in Motion (RIM) so that no one else could obtain data from the Canadian-based company pertaining to electronic communication occurred during a specific period of time between the two main characters of the memo controversy, Haqqani and Ijaz. On the other hand, RIM also has declined to provide communication data to the government as was desired be the commission, saying it could not share it with anyone else unless Haqqani waived his privacy rights. On a number of occasions during the previous hearings, the commission doubted that both the government and Haqqani were not cooperating with it and using delaying tactics to make it hard for it to get to the bottom of the scandal. The commission on various occasions also admonished Interior Minister Rehman Malik, Interior Secretary Khawaja Siddique Akbar, Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir and Deputy Attorney General Tariq Mahmood Jehangiri for not cooperating with the commission and complying with its orders in true letter and spirit.


  1. Hussain Haqqani was one the best and most effective Pakistan ambassadors. He has worked hard to lift up Pakistan image in USA and also to bridge the gap while the relation went in turmoil between the two countries. Good Pakistani citizens have lost the services of a great man. I am sure, at the end this whole episode of Memogate will lead to no where. If Hussain Haqqani had to send a message he could have directly talked to USA heads instead of sending a letter through third person. This memo business looks like a sting operation cooked up by Ijaz in collusion with the deep state to get Haqqani out. Why would Ijaz show the “evidence” to Pasha in London? If he is a legitimate person shouldn’t he have given the “evidence” to the Pak justice department instead? It all smells of an orchestrated drama.

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