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ISLAMABAD: Former prime minister and Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) secretary general Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on Tuesday said he will resign as the secretary general from the opposition alliance, if Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) again becomes its part.

Talking to the media informally after appearing before an accountability court in the Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) case, he said if the PPP becomes part of PDM again, the opposition alliance should find a new secretary general. "I will not compromise on principles," Abbasi further said.

Abbasi said the PDM has not given an invitation to the PPP. "PDM chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman has clearly stated that the PPP needs to revisit its decisions. They need to restore the trust that they have betrayed," he said.

He said the PDM had sought an explanation from the PPP, which chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari had torn into pieces. "We had asked for a response. Join together the torn pieces of the explanation letter of the PDM, read it, and give us the clarification we had sought," he said.

To another question, he said the PPP cannot become part of the PDM on itself. They can only do so once they restore their trust in the PDM. The alliance does not have a revolving-door policy that you break its trust, leave the movement and try to come back again when you face difficulties, he said.

About government claims of 3.94 percent growth, he said the government was telling lie about growth rate. All economic expert term government's claim a lie, he said, adding that during the last years the government also said that growth rate is above three percent but in reality it was negative.

He said that if growth rate was 3.94 percent then there will no unemployment and no inflation.

Abbasi said the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) is one of the most corrupt institutions in the country, and makes decisions after taking money.

"We have been demanding the installation of cameras during the NAB investigation and court hearing aimed to inform public that what the NAB is doing," he said, adding that the country has suffered a lot due to the NAB.

He said no officer was ready to implement whatever the federal cabinet decides.

Despite the commission reports the NAB has become a silent spectator on sugar scandal, he said.

He further said that nothing will happen on Rawalpindi Ring Road scam.

Those whose names were being mentioned in both scandals will be made scapegoats, the real culprits of these two scandals are someone else, he said.

The PML-N leader said that the ministers and the advisors resign but no case was filed against any of them.

The NAB could not prove a single case against the PML-N for the last three years, he said.

Earlier, Abbasi and other accused appeared before the accountability court in the LNG case. The court marked attendance of all the accused and allow Abbasi to go. The NAB prosecutor, Usman Mirza, Abbasi's counsel Barrister Zafarullah Khan, and the counsel of other accused appeared before the court.

The court recorded statement of the prosecution witness, assistant economic advisor Allah Nawaz. The witness produced various documents before the court regarding the case. Abbasi's counsel raised objection over the documents produced before the court.

Zafarullah conducted cross examination of Director Gas Abdur Rashid. The counsel asked Rashid how many times Gas Infrastructure Development Cess (GIDC) law been made?

The witness replied that the law has been made three times and amended once.

The witness further said that a high powered board oversees GIDC projects and the Ministry of Finance is the head of the high powered board.

He said that the board includes deputy chairman planning, petroleum minister and the secretary finance.

The cross-examination of witness Rashid was not completed.

The court adjourned hearing of the case till June 1st and Abbasi's counsel will continue cross-examination of the witness.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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