Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday demanded full transparency from a UK-based asset recovery firm over corruption by the Pakistani elite after the company’s owners claimed they had evidence of money laundering by several Pakistanis.
Khan said in a series of scathing tweets that Pakistan’s elite were involved in systematic corruption and money laundering. His comments came a few days later Kaveh Moussavi from Broadsheet The LLC said its company was influenced by former prime minister Nawaz Sharif and others and has evidence of money laundering by several other Pakistanis.
Moussavi claimed it was former prime minister Nawaz Sharif offered a bribe to the company for leaving an investigation into its foreign assets and added that the deal was offered by someone claiming to be the nephew of Sharif in 2012.
“The Panama Papers reveal the corruption of the ruling elite & previous money laundering. Now Broadsheet revelation reveals the large scale corruption of the ruling elite & money laundering, ” Khan tweeted.
“This revelation (is) the tip of the iceberg. We want full transparency from Broadsheet about our elite money laundering and who is stopping the investigation, ”he said.
Khan said these revelations had repeatedly exposed what he had said in the “24 year struggle against corruption which is the greatest threat to the progress of the country”.
“These elites came to power and plundered the country. They carry out money laundering to hide their illicit profits abroad, safe from domestic prosecution. Then they used their political clout to get hold of the NRO. That’s how they secure the wealth stolen, ” he said, adding that the country was suffering as a consequence.
He added that these elites cannot hide behind the “ victimization ” card of this international revelation.
The National Reconciliation Ordinance (NRO) is a law enacted by former military rulers Pervez Musharraf to acquit all cases and allegations of corruption against the former prime minister Benazir Bhutto, her husband Asif Ali Zardari and dozens more in 2007 to make political deals with him.
The well-known law has become synonymous with political concessions to make political deals.
After Moussavi’s revelations, Khan formed an inter-ministerial committee to investigate the alleged corruption against these individuals.
“The cabinet forms an inter-ministerial committee, which will reveal the details of the people named in Broadsheet scandal, “Minister of Information Shibli Faraz said.
It says that Khan has decided to make the names public after a thorough examination.
British company Broadsheet LLC is registered with Isle of Man in the time of the former president Pervez Musharraf and it struck a deal with Pakistan National Accountability Bureau (NAB) to track Pakistan’s illegal foreign assets.
The contract was terminated in 2003 by NAB.
Dawn reported that an attorney associated with the previous company told the newspaper Sharif is the “top target” of Broadsheet investigation.
The company owner alleged that someone claimed to be related to Sharif approached him in 2012 and offered him some money to drop the investigation against him.
The time for new accusations against Sharif coincided with his party’s full support of the Opposition alliance to overthrow Khan’s government on charges of electoral fraud.
Sharif, 70, that Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) supremo, has lived in London since November last year after Lahore High Court allowed him to go abroad for four weeks for treatment.
Former prime minister three times, convicted in two corruption cases – property Avenfield and Al-Azizia – declared an offender by Islamabad High Court after she failed to appear before him despite several warnings.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is generated automatically from syndicated feeds.)