Corruption cases’ merger: CJP to hear Nawaz Sharif’s chamber appeal on Feb 21

F.P. Report

ISLAMABAD: Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar is set to hear disqualified premier Nawaz Sharif’s chamber appeal on February 21 against Registrar Office’s objections concerning his request to consolidate three corruption references against him.

The petition against Registrar Office’s objections was set today for first hearing on February 21.

The development came today after CJP had rejected Sharif’s petition earlier over Registrar’s objections. The ousted premier has challenged the rejection with another petition today.

Plea seeking merger of all three corruption references namely Avenfield properties, Al-Azizia Steel Mills and Flagship Investments was lodged after top court’s July 28, 2017 verdict that disqualified him as the premier of Pakistan. Supreme Court of Pakistan (SCP) had ordered National Accountability Bureau (NAB) to lodge corruption cases against Nawaz Sharif.

He was disqualified for not declaring salaries he was entitled to as an official of his son’s company.

The case against Nawaz Sharif was pursued by opposition parties mainly Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and the top court had taken up the case in October 2016.

Earlier in November, accountability court s verdict over Nawaz s plea to merge the three cases for joint hearings was challenged in Islamabad High Court (IHC).

Lawyer Azam Tarar had maintained that the court rejected his client’s petition without going through the reasons mentioned in the detailed IHC order. He further demanded to nullify accountability court s decision.

Later that month, two-member division bench of the high court heard the petition filed by the former premier and ruled against accountability court s verdict.

Nawaz Sharif’s lawyer had argued that July 28, 2017 verdict of the apex court didn’t ask the accountability bureau to file references separately. He added that separate charges cannot be imposed on each reference.