Islamabad: After drawing flaks from several quarters over the Panama leaks that revealed three of his children own offshore companies and assets not shown on his family’s wealth statement, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Friday announced that he would write a letter to the Chief Justice of Pakistan for setting up of a commission to probe allegations being levelled against his family.
Addressing the nation, Prime Minister Sharif said he would accept the verdict of the commission, adding that whether people would forgive those who are levelling baseless allegations and their claims proved untrue in investigations by the commission, reported Radio Pakistan.
The Prime Minister categorically stated that “neither he nor his family is involved in any illegal business activity, nor they took commissions or kickbacks;” adding that despite all this, he presents himself and his family for accountability as this is the democratic tradition.
He said details of their assets are there in the declarations they filed before the Election Commission and could be accessed by anyone. He said declaration of assets of parliamentarians were removed from the website of the Election Commission, but he issued directions for uploading them again on the website as people have the right to know about assets of their representatives.
Prime Minister Sharif said his Government fully believes in elimination of corruption, good governance and transparency. This is also acknowledged by international institutions.
He also reminded people that despite the fact there was no mention of his name in Panama Papers, he announced the formation of an inquiry commission to be headed by a retired judge.
He regretted that some elements including those in the media started a propaganda campaign, including character assassination of honourable judges, so that they do not agree to become part of the commission.
Prime Minister Sharif said some elements are inflicting huge losses on the country because of their fascist attitude.
The leaks revealed that three of his children own offshore companies – identified as three British Virgin Islands-based companies Nescoll Ltd, Nielsen Enterprises Ltd and Hangon Property Holdings Ltd, incorporated in 1993, 1994 and 2007 respectively – and assets not shown on his family’s wealth statement.
These companies have reportedly been used to channel funds to acquire foreign assets, including some apartments along Park Lane in London’s Mayfair area.
The Prime Minister has declared his assets worth Rs. 1.9 billion, earlier.
This was known after the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) released the details of assets and liabilities of parliamentarians for the fiscal year 2014-15.
The details submitted by Sharif acknowledged that the total assets owned by him were worth Rs. 1.9 billion, while the documents showed that his son Hussain Nawaz had sent him Rs. 216 million from abroad, the Express Tribune reported.
The dossier stated that Sharif did not own any property abroad.
He also declared that he owned inherited land in Sheikhupura and Lahore with a total worth of Rs. 1.08 billion.
The Prime Minister also owned cars worth Rs. 160 million in addition to another property in Lahore valued at Rs. 250 million.
Sharif’s wife also owned a bungalow in Murree valued at Rs.100 million, besides having inherited and gifted shares worth Rs. 120 million in her name in five sugar, textile and spinning mills.
She also owned birds worth Rs. two million and furniture valued at Rs. 40 million.
It is mandatory for all parliamentarians to declare assets held by them, their spouses and their dependents under Section 42 (A) of the Representation of Peoples Act of 1976 and Section 25 (A) of the Senate Election Act.