Pakistan’s Supreme Court today dismissed the review petitions filed by ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif, his children and Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, challenging his disqualification in the Panama Papers scandal. The court had reserved its verdict on the review petitions after the lawyers for all petitioners completed their arguments earlier in the day. A five-judge Supreme bench headed by Justice Asif Saeed Khosa had taken up the petitions seeking review of the court’s July 28 judgement which disqualified 67-year-old Sharif for dishonesty and ordered the filing of corruption cases against him, his children — Hussain, Hassan and Maryam Nawaz, son-in- law Mohammad Safdar and Dar.
“For reasons to be recorded later, all these review petitions are dismissed,” Justice Khosa announced. The reasons for the judgement will be revealed later in the detailed order, the Dawn reported. With the rejection of the review petitions, Sharif’s disqualification as a member of parliament remains valid. The Sharif family and Dar will now face corruption cases filed by the National Accountability Bureau in the accountability court. The Supreme Court had yesterday asked Sharif to have trust in the court “which had always come to his rescue in the past”. “There is no need to get apprehensive merely because one decision has come against you,” Justice Asif Saeed Khosa observed while addressing senior counsel Khawaja Haris Ahmed, representing Sharif.
The observation came when Sharif’s lawyer Khawaja Haris expressed the reservation that his client might not get fair trial in the accountability court since everything in the corruption references against Sharif and his children had been attributed to the Supreme Court. “When I go to the trial court I will have to assail the manner the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) conducted inquiry against my client, which will be difficult due to the July 28 Supreme Court judgement that carries tags like godfather against him and because everything in the reference had been attributed to the apex court,” the counsel had said.