Court let Musharraf off the hook, claims Nawaz

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–Deposed PM says didn’t fire spy chief who ‘advised’ him to resign keeping in mind ‘national interest’

–Says he was ‘pleasantly surprised’ to see his entire statement made on Wednesday covered in national press 

 

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) supremo Nawaz Sharif on Thursday said that former dictator General (r) Pervez Musharraf was “allowed” to leave the country with the court’s permission.

He was responding to journalists’ queries pertaining to his statement in the accountability court hearing Avenfield case on Wednesday, wherein he had claimed that corruption references were framed against him as a punishment for his unwavering stance on civil supremacy — and particularly for filing a high treason case against Gen Musharraf.

Responding to a question pertaining to his statement regarding an intelligence agency chief who had advised him to resign if he didn’t want to be sent on an extended leave, Nawaz stated that the only reason he didn’t fire the official was to safeguard the country’s interests.

“Such problems have been haunting us for the last 70 years,” he said, claiming that he has shown tremendous “patience, forgiveness, forbearance, and strength”.

Furthermore, Nawaz also remarked that former federal information minister Pervaiz Rasheed and former senator Mushahidullah Khan had resigned because of his forbearance.

“There is a time for everything, a time to say things and time to do things,” said the former premier. “The matter came in front of the court so I spoke about it. This was the truth and it should have come to the forefront.”

“Everyone must stand up. Once everyone stands only then everything will become possible,” he further said, adding that the coverage of his entire statement by the media had “pleasantly surprised” him.

“It is the right of media to telecast everything. Media shouldn’t let anyone suppress it,” he opined.

Earlier, during the third consecutive hearing of the Avenfield case, the former premier recorded his statement, saying that challenges and pressure had increased with the initiation of the treason case against Musharraf.

“All the weapons are made for politicians,” observed Nawaz, adding that he had known that convicting the former president would be a hard task.

“When Musharraf left for the court in 2014 he directly went to the hospital as it was decided from before. Musharraf pretended to be sick and avoided the case hearings,” lamented Nawaz.

He said that Musharraf could not be put behind bars for even an hour, however, pressure was mounted on the Sharif family at every turn.

“The sole purpose of the 2014 sit-ins was to pressurise me. PTV, parliament, PM House, President House none of them were safe from the plans of the elements causing unrest. Those who were making those plans thought I would be pressurised,” he stated.

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