Opposition articulates really tough questions for PM to answer

WEB DESK: The joint opposition will seek answers of seven questions from Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on the Panama Papers when he comes to the Parliament on Friday.

Talking to media in front of the Parliament on Wednesday, Opposition Leader in the Senate Aitzaz Ahsan said the opposition has already spelled out the questions that it wishes to pose to the Prime Minister, adding “when he comes to the Parliament he should be fully prepared for these questions.”

According to seven questions of the joint opposition, “(1) Will the Prime Minister disclose:

“i) The interest that he or any member of his family/relative has or has had in Apartment Numbers 16, 16-A, 17, 17-A in Avenfield House 118 Park Lane, Mayfair, London, including the date of first purchase by any such member/relative?

“ii) The source of funds for the purchase and whether Income Tax had been paid on the income that generated the amount necessary for the first purchase or subsequent transfer of interest in them by him or his family/relative?

“(2) Can the Prime Minister clarify which of the following contradictory statements are correct?

“i) A statement published in The Guardian London April 10, 2000, wherein Kalsoom Nawaz Sharif claimed that apartments had been purchased to educate their children;

“ii) The report published by The Independent, London, October 19, 1998 asserting that the Prime Minister’s family through NIELSON Enterprises Ltd and NESCOL Ltd, were the owners of the Apartments;

“iii) The statement of his Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan during a press conference on August, 8 2012, asserting that the Prime Minister had purchased the apartments in 1993-94;

“iv) The contradictory statements of Hassan Nawaz Sharif in an interview in BBC’s HardTalk programme in 1999; and of Hussain Nawaz Sharif in Express TV’s programme Kal Tak in 2016?

“(3) Since when has the Prime Minister been residing in the aforesaid Apartments and is he aware that on 18th March 1999, the High Court of Justice, Queen’s Bench Division, gave a judgement ordering the Sharif family to pay US $32 million as debt owed to Al Taufiq Company for investment Funds Ltd? And would he indicate the source of legitimate funds from which the debt was paid? Is it a fact that subsequently a sum of 7 million pounds sterling was raised against the Apartments from the Deutsche Bank in Switzerland?

“(4) What are the names and total number of offshore companies owned or registered in the name of members of the Prime Minister’s family or the Prime Minister himself and what is the net value of the assets of such companies, bank accounts and properties?

“(5) What properties are or have been held beneficially, benami or otherwise bought and sold by the Prime Minister and his family during the period 1985-2016 and what source of Income Tax-paid funds were available to the Prime Minister and his family during the aforesaid period?

“(6) Is it true that the Prime Minister’s sons and daughter hold or have held substantial shares in industrial units in Pakistan owned by the Sharif family including Ittefaq Sugar Mills and Chaudhry Sugar Mills and are/were thereby bound to file Tax Returns and declare their world-wide income including incomes from offshore companies and bank accounts?

“(7) How much Income Tax, year-wise since 1985, has been paid by the Prime Minister and members of his family and the assets in the name of each such member?”

Source: Business Recorder