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Ex-PM Abbasi wants LNG case proceedings aired live on TV

Says their defence is that they too acted 'overzealously'

SAMAA | - Posted: Nov 11, 2020 | Last Updated: 4 months ago
SAMAA |
Posted: Nov 11, 2020 | Last Updated: 4 months ago

Former prime minister and PML-N MNA Shahid Khaqan Abbasi wants court proceedings of the LNG terminal case against him to be aired live on television.

Abbasi appeared before an Islamabad accountability court in the case on Wednesday. The court ordered NAB officials to provide all documents of a supplementary reference in the case to Abbasi by Thursday.

"We have filed a petition that this case must be shown to the people of Pakistan live on TV," Abbasi told the media after the hearing. "So the people of Pakistan can know the truth about NAB cases."

The former premier said they have not been accused of corruption in the case, but exceeding their authority.

He said their defence will be that they saw there was no electricity or gas in the country and people were worried, hence they too acted "overzealously".

Abbasi's comment was a jibe at the ISPR statement in the Captain Safdar Awan arrest saga. The ISPR said on Tuesday that the army’s court of inquiry into the arrest of Captain Safdar found that the officers of the Inter-Services Intelligence and Rangers had acted “overzealously” in the case, which “led to misunderstanding between the two state institutions.”

Related: Nawaz calls army report on Safdar arrest a ‘cover-up’

It said the officers were “under increasing public pressure to ensure prompt action as per the law”. However, the ISPR added, the officers were “experienced enough to have acted more prudently and could have avoided creating an unwarranted situation".

Ex-PM Abbasi said it was necessary for the investigation into the Karachi incident to be made public. "People must be aware of the facts of the IG's kidnapping in Karachi," he added.

LNG terminal case

Abbasi, along with ex-finance minister Miftah Ismail, is accused of misusing his authority and causing losses to the national exchequer while awarding the contract for LNG terminal-1.

The former PM is accused of illegally awarding a 15-year contract for the terminal while he was serving as petroleum minister in Nawaz Sharif’s cabinet. The case was reopened in 2018 after being closed in 2016.

NAB claims the then government rented out a terminal of the Engro Group for 15 years at a cost of Rs27 million per day. The anti-graft body also filed a supplementary reference in the case, accusing Abbasi of receiving a Rs736-million kickback for awarding the terminal contract.

The former prime minister denies the charges against him.
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