The Supreme Court of Pakistan announces Nawaz Sharif disqualification. The announcement comes at a time when there is a lot of political uncertainty brewing in the country. There was a long process which kicked off because of the Panama leaks revealing offshore companies.
Nawaz Sharif Disqualification and Panama Papers
So what led to Nawaz Sharif Qualification?
It started back in January 2017, when Panama Papers got leaked. A firm in Panama had some papers with details relating to politicians and celebrities across the world holding offshore companies. The idea was to have offshore businesses that would help them save taxes. So Panama Papers got leaked. At that time, the list also included details about the PM Nawaz Sharif’s children owning offshore companies.
Sharif Family Was Asked To Show Money Trail
Once it became evident that Nawaz Sharif’s children had offshore companies, opposition parties went to Supreme Court to get the matter investigated. The SC with a panel of five judges was formed to investigate the case. The honorable court took the task to trace money trail and its links to Nawaz Sharif and his family.
Imran Khan on Ishaq Dar Affidavit
In February, the PTI Chairman Imran Khan stated that Ishaq Dar had given an affidavit a few years ago, admitting to money laundering. The Chairman said that it was proof enough of the involvement of the party in money laundering.
Supreme Court Reserving the Verdict
At the end of February 2017, the Supreme Court listened to both the parties and the reserved judgment on Panama case. At the time, the honorable court had said that it would decide only by law. The court also mentioned that,
It would write a decision that people will remember at least for the next 20 years.
Unending Wait to Court’s Decision
A day before the split Supreme Court Decision on Panama case, the judges had said they would announce it at 2:00 pm on Thursday 19th April 2017. It created a lot of chaos with each party getting ready that it may come in its favor. PML (N) was confident that it would get a favorable judgment.
Panama Case Split Decision
The most important decision before Nawaz Sharif disqualification came as split. The split Panama decision made it uncertain if people of Pakistan would see the kind of decision they anticipated. Two of the judges disqualified the Prime Minister. However, three of the judges, despite their harsh criticism, did not go for straight disqualification.
Finalization of JIT
The JIT that leads to Nawaz Sharif disqualification was formed during the first week of May. It was a 540 pages verdict that touched all aspects of the case. Among other things, it mentioned a dysfunctional NAB Chairman who did not cooperate with the investigators. At the same time, Pakistan Army said that it would pay its constitutional and legal role in Panama case, regardless of the verdict.
Maryam Nawaz Twitter Spat with International Journalists
Maryam Nawaz Sharif, the Prime Minister’s daughter, termed Panama case as crap on Twitter. To which the journalist who made the Panama leaks replied. The sparring session continued with Bastian Obermayer and Frederik Obermaier till Maryam Nawaz Sharif stopped tweeting.
JIT Started Its Investigation
At the start of May, the Joint Investigation Team for Panama formally launched its investigation. The team was only given two months to complete its proceedings, and it did its job despite the criticism and difficulties.
Nawaz Sharif First Appearance Before the Joint Investigation Team
Nawaz Sharif made history by becoming the first Prime Minister of the country to appear before an investigating body. The family of the Prime Minister also appeared before the JIT.
- Hussain Nawaz Sharif appeared before the JIT five times.
- Hassan Nawaz Sharif appeared before the JIT twice.
- Maryam Nawaz Sharif also appeared before the JIT.
The Final Verdict on Panama Case and Details
The Prime Minister is ordered to step down from his position. It was his third term in office as Prime Minister. There are a lot of speculations about next Prime Minister of the country.
The Supreme Court of Pakistan gave the order to the Election Commission of Pakistan to de-notify PM from his national seat. It was a unanimous decision from all the judges. The judges stated that he had not been honest with the courts, parliament, and was not fit for the office of the PM.
Furthermore, the SC has asked that all the material collected by JIT must be used to investigate financial dealings of the Sharif family.