ISLAMABAD: Special Assistant to the Prime Minister for Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan on Wednesday called out Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President Shehbaz Sharif over his recent press conference and said that “his narrative is based on lies”
She said in the London presser, the opposition leader portrayed himself as a pious man but when the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) seized his properties the other day, he did not say a single word about that case against him. “He should have informed the nation when his son, son-in-law, nephews and other family members who stay in London would return to the country,” she added.
The special assistant lamented the fact that in his hour-long press conference, the PML-N president did not give any updates on the health of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, who is in London to seek medical treatment.
“Shehbaz presented a baseless narrative through lies and tried to throw dust in the eyes of the entire nation. Claiming victory in an under-trial case is surprising. Shehbaz sahib, you have not been given a certificate of innocence,” she added.
She said that the Prime Minister Imran Khan promised the nation to bring back looted wealth of the country and the process started yesterday when the United Kingdom’s (UK) National Crime Agency (NCA) announced on its website that Rs38.50 billion recovered from a Pakistani family and returned to Pakistan. The country was plundered for 72 years but no one dared to bring back looted money but PM Imran dared to do so, she added.
The government, she said, would keep exposing the faces of opposition and continue to bring back the looted money to Pakistan.
The special assistant said that PM Imran takes pride in belonging to the Niazi tribe. “Sharif brothers should now tell the nation about their bloodline as otherwise I will have to unveil the truth,” she added.
She said that the government was working to materialise the prime minister’s vision of across-the-board accountability and the rule of law in the country. She added that the fact that sitting Punjab ministers, who are facing false corruption cases and are under NAB custody, reflects the prime minister’s policy on accountability without discrimination.
She said that on the request of the opposition it was decided in the parliamentary committee for the appointment of chief election commissioner (CEC) and members of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to announce their names at once within one week.
“On one hand, the opposition sought a one-week time for consensus and on the other they approached the Supreme Court (SC) to seek interpretation of article 213-A,” she added.
“The honourable courts are giving respect to the parliament and referring the matter of national importance to the parliament whereas the opposition is time and again seeking indulgence of the apex court,” she further said.
Firdous said that the government did not want ECP to become dysfunctional and went to the extent of creating consensus on the appointment of its member from Balochistan but the opposition deliberately delayed his name for one week.
The special assistant also denounced the attack on Dawn’s office in Islamabad, adding that action was taken by the government immediately after the protest came to her notice. She said that the government “will discourage such acts because they cannot be allowed”.
Responding to a question pertaining to the protests outside Dawn’s office, she said, “It is our responsibility to protect your lives and property. To protect Pakistan’s interests is the media’s responsibility.”
“Hurt my political interests, this liking, disliking of politicians is normal. In politics, two different narratives go side by side. But where the state’s interest is concerned, you have to separate politics and the state. I am with the media, whenever there is injustice. I am the spokesperson of the media industry as well,” she concluded.