ISLAMABAD – The PPP will adopt ‘wait and see’ policy as Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf challenges the government amid the Panama leaks scandal engulfing the ruling Sharif family, The Nation learnt.
The PTI launched an anti-government movement across the country yesterday seeking accountability of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his family.
PTI chief Imran Khan invited all the Pakistanis to join the movement besides urging his workers to make the anti-movement campaign a success.
Leading a rally in Peshawar, he said that every Pakistani wanted to eliminate corruption from the country, adding, major departments had been destroyed due to continuous corruption.
“This rally will continue until accountability of PM in Panama leaks,” he contended.
Imran Khan said that the national institutions including the National Accountability Bureau, the Federal Board of Revenue, the Election Commission of Pakistan and the judiciary would be urged to bring the powerful under rule of law.
Yesterday, PPP chief Bilawal Bhutto wished good luck to the participants of Tehrik-e-Ehtesab (movement for accountability) launched by the PTI.
“(The) democratic right to protest should be encouraged (and) not punished,” Bilawal said in a message posted on his verified Twitter account.
“Panama Papers, (the) world’s largest corruption scandal, has exposed (Prime Minister Nawaz) Sharif’s corruption. (The) government must accept Opposition’s TOR (Terms of Reference) or face the music,” he added.
The PTI rally is aimed at pressing the ruling Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) to take measures for an end to corruption and establish system of accountability in State institutions.
The rally is also part of the Opposition’s efforts to press the government to launch probe into Panama Leaks, which involved offshore holdings of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s family.
“This is just the beginning, this is just a trailer. The match will not end. We will be on the streets to mobilise masses till Nawaz Sharif presents himself for accountability,” Imran Khan said, addressing his supporters in Peshawar.
“Are Parliamentarians not duty bound to ask Nawaz Sharif how his properties have multiplied? This is stolen money and corruption money,” he asserted.
A senior PPP leader said his party leadership wanted to see how the PTI campaign goes. “This would be a wait and see policy. We are not for a major rally against the government at the moment apart from taking up important issues in the Parliament or holding public rallies here and there,” he added.
He said that the PTI had the right to protest but the PPP will not become part of its anti-government campaign for now.
“We can take to streets if the government fails to accept the Opposition’s demands on Panama leaks investigations,” he said.
Reports said the ECP can disqualify both Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Imran Khan for alleged corruption.
The PML-N has filed a reference seeking disqualification of Imran Khan while the PTI and some other parties have filed identical references against Prime Minister Sharif for concealing assets.
Meanwhile, Former Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry – the head of the Pakistan Justice and Democratic Party – has also filed a reference against Prime Minister Sharif to National Assembly Speaker Sardar Ayaz Sadiq, seeking Prime Minister’s disqualification as he was allegedly not Sadiq (truthful) and Ameen (trustworthy) in view of the Article 62 (1) (f) of the Constitution.
Under Article 63 (2), “if any question arises whether a member of the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament) has become disqualified from being a member, the Speaker or, as the case may be, the Chairman shall, unless he decides that no such question has arisen, refer the question to the Election Commission within thirty days and if he fail to do so within the aforesaid period it shall be deemed to have been referred to the Election Commission.”