Friday September 24, 2021

What’s most damaging for Nawaz, his children

ISLAMABAD: Apparently, the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) has done an impossible job in just 60 days by obtaining four documentary evidences which if found correct by the apex court, will be enough to ruin the political future of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his children — Maryam Nawaz and Hussain Nawaz.

The JIT’s most damning charge-sheet against the Sharif family contains in its claims that during the course of investigation it succeeded in obtaining documentary evidence proving Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif as owner of an offshore company; Maryam Nawaz being beneficial owner of two offshore companies; authentication of fictitious/ purchase agreements produced by Sharifs; and falsification of trust deed signed by Hussain Nawaz and Maryam Nawaz.

The JIT report claimed to have obtained documentary evidence in regard to: (a) Confirmation of the beneficial ownership of Maryam Nawaz of BVI companies namely Nielsen Enterprises Limited and Nescoll Limited by the Financial Investigation Agency, British Virgin Islands; (b) Confirmation of Chairmanship of Mian Nawaz Sharif in offshore company namely FZE Capital, UAE by Jabel Ali Free Zone Authority (JAFZA); (c) Confirmation of fictitious sale/ purchase agreements submitted to the court by the respondents, by the Ministry of Justice, UAE; (d) Submission of falsified/ tampered Declarations of Trusts by the respondents in the Supreme Court of Pakistan and before the JIT, as per report of forensic expert, the UK.

If the JIT’s documentary evidence is accepted by the Supreme Court, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif can also land in serious trouble owing to his statement before the apex court in Panama Papers case in which he had categorically stated that Maryam Nawaz neither is nor ever was beneficial owner of the offshore companies - Nielsen and Nescoll Limited.

In his statement before the apex court, the prime minister had categorically denied any direct link with these offshore companies and the London flats. He also rejected the indirect link with these offshore companies by not only dismissing that Maryam Nawaz is his dependant but added that his daughter neither is nor ever was the beneficial owner of Nescoll and Nielson.

Even if it is proved that Maryam is not her father’s dependent, the above statement of the prime minister could land him in trouble in case the daughter is proved “beneficial owner” of the offshore companies as reflected in the PanamaLeaks. Maryam Nawaz was to prove with evidence that she is neither dependent of her father nor is the beneficial owner of Nescoll, Nielson and Coomber.

In her statement before the apex court, she said that she was not and had never been the beneficial owner of any of the offshore companies or the properties in question. She said that the companies were being managed under a trust arrangement for the sole benefit of her brother, Hussain Nawaz with her being a trustee. Maryam was to produce the documentary evidence to show that she is trustee and not beneficial owner.

Amongst the PM’s family, Hussain Nawaz admitted that he owned the offshore companies, which he claimed to have purchased in 2006. He also claimed before the apex court that he had made his sister Maryam a trustee.