Chairman National Accountability Bureau Justice (retd) Javed Iqbal summoned from all broadcast organisations the record of all media appearances by DG NAB Lahore Saleem Shehzad, a press release stated on Friday.
DG NAB Lahore Shehzad Saleem appeared on Geo News’ show ‘Aaj Shahzeb Khanzada Kay Sath’ last night, where he said that the anti-corruption watchdog would file a reference against Opposition Leader in National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif by the end of this month.
Opposition leaders reacted to Shehzad’s comments and submitted a privilege motion in the NA, objecting to the “media trial” of the opposition members and urged “immediate intervention” of the House.
NAB spokesman said that the chairman has summoned the record of DG NAB Lahore’s media talks so that action can be taken in the light of law.
“NAB respects all the honourable members of the assembly and it is pertinent to see if DG NAB Lahore Shehzad made any statements against facts and in what manner it maligned the honourable lawmakers,” stated the press release.
Today, former premier Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and other senior PML-N leaders addressed the media and spoke about the DG NAB’s interviews which they termed it a form of “political revenge”.
“It has become clear what NAB is doing. It’s pretty simple what’s happening but if I say it then a NAB case will be formed,” the PML-N leader said while addressing the media.
“A NAB official is conducting media trial of MNAs on the directions of the accountability watchdog’s chairman.”
Stating that a privilege motion has been submitted in NA, Abbasi said, “We don’t want those who are on government payroll to hold people accountable.”
Abbasi further said, “Only one party is being targeted and it’s name is PML-N.” Upholding that they want accountability but not revenge, Abbasi said, “We are not scared of accountability and want the process of accountability to start from PML-N.”
“The NAB chairman should contact me and I will give him two cases to look over,”the former premier stated.
Abbasi continued, “The leader of the opposition in the National Assembly is under arrest and the DG NAB shared details of his case on television. However, there was no truth in the details he shared.”
DG NAB Lahore Shehzad Saleem, in his interview on Geo News, also accused Shehbaz’s son-in-law Ali Imran of depositing official cheques in his personal account.
Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry criticised the privilege motion by the opposition, calling it an “attempt to influence” an ongoing investigation by the NAB.
Commenting on the motion submitted by the opposition against the various television interviews given by the director general of NAB Lahore, Chaudhry said, “It is not appropriate to move a privilege motion on an ongoing investigation.”
Stating that they “will have to see where the matter started from”, Chaudhry said, “The opposition leader in NA [Shehbaz Sharif] gave a speech on the NAB case on the floor of the House.”
“MNAs cannot be treated differently than common people,” he added.