Sharif’s daughter appears before accountability court

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Islamabad, Oct 9 (IANS) Ousted Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s daughter Maryam Nawaz appeared before an accountability court here on Monday over a reference filed against her by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) pertaining to London properties owned by the family.

Maryam arrived at the court amid tight security, accompanied by senior ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) party leaders and ministers, reports Dawn news.

Her husband, retired Captain Muhammad Safdar, who was taken into custody by the NAB, was also brought to the court later.

During the hearing, PML-N leader Tariq Fazal Chaudhry submitted surety bonds worth 5 million Pakistani rupees ($47,450) on Maryam’s behalf. She was also provided a copy of the NAB reference along with relevant details.

The court also heard arguments on an application filed by Nawaz Sharif seeking permanent exemption from appearance in the court.

Meanwhile, the NAB prosecution asked the court to issue arrest warrants for Nawaz Sharif, who they said had left for London to look after his ailing wife, without informing NAB authorities.

Accountability Judge Mohammad Bashir reserved his decision on the former Prime Minister’s application, reports Dawn news.

Captain Safdar was taken into custody by a NAB team minutes after he landed at the Benazir Bhutto International Airport along with wife Maryam from London earlier Monday.

The arrest followed issuance of non-bailable warrants by the accountability court for Capt Safdar after he failed to appear on previous hearings despite notices.

A five-member bench of the Supreme Court on July 28 had directed the NAB to file references against Nawaz Sharif and his children in six weeks in the accountability court and directed the trial court to decide the references within six months.

The former premier and his sons have been named in all three NAB references, while Maryam and husband Safdar were named in only one.

On October 2, the accountability court had issued non-bailable arrest warrants for Sharif’s sons – Hussain and Hassan Nawaz – Captain Safdar

–IANS

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