ISLAMABAD: In the midst of the ongoing political maneuvering between the government and opposition, National Accountability Bureau Chairman Admiral (retd) Fasih Bukhari on Friday okayed the reopening of cases against Mian Nawaz Sharif and Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif.
According to a NAB spokesman, the decision to reopen the cases against the Sharif brothers was on the recommendation of a special committee constituted by the NAB chairman under the supervision of the NAB prosecutor general.
The NAB chairman has signed an application, requesting the Accountability Court to reopen three references against the Sharif brothers to contest the quashment petition which was filed by the Sharifs in the Lahore High Court in October 2011. These cases include the Hudaibia Paper Mills, assets beyond known sources of income and Ittefaq Foundry (wilful loan default) cases.
It is pertinent to mention here that proceedings in cases against the Sharif brothers were adjourned sine die by the Accountability Court in 2001 when they were in exile. After their return, NAB filed an application for reopening the cases in 2007, which was granted but later these cases were adjourned sine die in 2010 by the Accountability Court with the direction that the trial could be commenced if an application signed by the NAB chairman was submitted before the court.
The present NAB chairman had constituted a special committee to revisit all the cases pending against the politicians. The committee recommended filing an application under the signature of the chairman for recommencement of these cases. The special committee is in the process of scrutinising the remaining cases relating to politicians and the findings/recommendations would be shared with the media accordingly.
However, NAB is still undecided about the fate of the reference by PM’s Adviser Rehman Malik against the Sharif brothers regarding money laundering of $32 million. The reference is still before the special committee constituted by the NAB chairman under the supervision of the NAB Prosecutor General.