PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif appeared on Saturday before an accountability court in Lahore for the hearing of the Ramzan Sugar Mills reference.
The opposition leader and his son, Hamza Shahbaz, have been accused of constructing a drain around the Hamza-owned sugar mills using money from the national treasury.
During the court proceedings, the PML-N leader spoke about a Daily Mail article on his alleged corrupt practices. The British tabloid had published a scathing report accusing him of embezzling millions of pounds of aid given by the UK for earthquake relief victims and schools. Shehbaz has accused the premier of being behind the report and “planting it”. The PML-N called the report ‘fabricated’ and said there is no truth to it.
Shehbaz told the court that he took action against those who embezzled the funds. “I got them arrested and auctioned off their properties. Why has NAB been sleeping for the last eight years?”
He said that he has been arrested in the Ashiana Housing and Ramzan Sugar Mills references, but completely different allegations were leveled against him in the article. The opposition leader remarked that the case should’ve been filed against him in the court. “Why publish the news and bring a bad name to the country?”
His lawyer, Atta Tarar, told the media that Shehbaz took action against Naveed Akram, who is accused of embezzling the funds of the Earthquake Reconstruction and Rehabilitation Authority. Shehbaz respects women, but some of Akram’s properties were in his wife’s name and action was taken against her too, he said.
The judge asked NAB why it didn’t present Hamza in court. The prosecutor told them that Hamza is on judicial remand and they are not allowed to bring him to court. The judge remarked that Hamza should be presented in the sugar mills case too.
The hearing has been adjourned till August 1.