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Former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi Monday demanded an 'on camera' investigation of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President and Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly, Shahbaz Sharif, on April 22 (Wednesday) as he (Shahbaz) has been summoned by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB).
Speaking at a news conference, Abbasi said that the investigation from Shahbaz should be conducted 'on camera', so that the nation should also get to know the facts.
"If the leader of the opposition is not safe from the NAB 'victimisation' and the tactics of the government, then who else will think over making any investment in this country?" he asked.
Abbasi alleged that Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government was destroying the country's economy and the politics, adding that the county was confronting a serious challenge in the shape of "flawed" government priorities.
"The NAB is silent over the sugar and wheat scam, and it is acting as silent spectator on the corruption in matters related to the coronavirus," he maintained.
Abbasi said that the opposition was not scoring political points on the Covid-19 situation and it was ready to cooperate in the efforts against the virus.
He feared that the people of Pakistan would face a "more serious" challenge in the coming days due to the "flawed" strategy of the government to prevent the spread of the virus.
"We fear that the challenge will become more serious in the days to come," Abbasi said, adding that when there was a lockdown, the country had to report three to four deaths daily, and today 25 deaths were reported.
"It means the rate of the infection is increasing at a time when the government announced relaxation in the lockdown," he added.
Abbasi said that it had been an experience in the rest of the world that the lockdown was relaxed when infection rate was declining, "but here we don't understand why such decisions are taken and who is taking such flawed decisions".
The former premier urged the government to immediately call the National Assembly session and hold a thorough debate on the situation and come up with a solution.
"The government is simply giving a choice to the people either to face hunger or the disease...governments cannot take any such decision, rather it has a responsibility to protect the people," he said, adding that if the people were left to face the disease it turn the situation into an uncontrollable scenario.
Abbasi maintained that on the one hand the government had failed to respond effectively to the Covid-19 pandemic, while on the other hand, it was embarking effectively on the strategy to suppress the opposition political parties.
"It has restarted defaming the politicians through the media. Take the example of Shahbaz Sharif, who despite earlier plea that he is a cancer survivor and it is necessary for him to remain in isolation, but taking no account, the NAB once again issued him a notice to appear on April 22," he said.
"Why is the NAB in haste? What's the objective behind the summon? There is no other objective but to defame him," Abbasi said. He pointed out that Shahbaz Sharif was arrested on October 5, 2018 in Saaf Pani case and when nothing was found against him then it tried to frame another case in Ashiana Housing Society.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020