Free Press Journal

Pak’s PML-N picks replacement candidates for Maryam Nawaz 


Lahore : The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) on Saturday decided on the election candidates to replace former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s daughter Maryam Nawaz, who was disqualified from contesting the polls in the Avenfield reference verdict.

  The party has issued tickets to its Lahore wing president Ali Pervez Malik for NA-127, one of the constituencies Maryam Nawaz was to contest from before she was disqualified, Geo News reported.

 For the provincial Assembly seat of PP-173 (Nankana Sahib), Irfan Shafi Khokhar will now be contesting in her place on the PML-N ticket.

This came a day after Sharif was sentenced to 10 years of imprisonment and a fine of eight million pounds in the Avenfield reference case, while his daughter was sentenced to 7 years of jail and fined two million pounds by the accountability court.

Meanwhile, Maryam Nawaz, don Saturday that she and her father will return to Pakistan on July 13.

Nearly 60 parties ditch women candidates

As many as 59 political parties in Pakistan have not issued general seat tickets to any women for contesting the upcoming general elections slated to take place on July 25.

The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Friday issued the details of political parties contesting the forthcoming elections and the percentage of tickets allocated to women candidates, reported Geo TV.

However 48 parties have issued tickets to a total of 304 women in total, the report quoted the ECP, as saying.

Zardari’s aide detained in money-laundering case A senior Pakistani banker, who is a close aide of former president Asif Ali Zardari, has been detained by the country’s investigation agency in connection with a money laundering case.

The Federal Investigation Agency detained Central Depository Company (CDC) chairman and Summit Bank vice chairman Hussain Lawai was detained from Karachi after being barred from travelling to Dubai.Lawai and his associates are accused of opening 29 fake accounts in the Summit Bank and United Bank of Pakistan Limited.

According to the FIA sources, beneficiaries of the provincial Sindh government deposited Rupees 35 billion in these fake accounts and the amount was subsequently transferred to different accounts including one allegedly belonging to an Arab national, Nasser Abdulla Hussain Lootah, who is the chairman of the Summit Bank’s board of directors.

Twenty nine accounts were opened in the name of seven people, including a woman, the sources said, adding that 18 to 19 of the ‘fake’ accounts were opened in the Summit Bank alone. The sources said the financial monitoring unit of the                 State Bank of Pakistan alerted the FIA about ‘fictitious’ transactions in the banks. Subsequently, the FIA interrogated four of the seven persons in whose name the 29 accounts were opened. All the four people, including the woman, expressed their ignorance about the transactions and recorded their statements before the magistrate concerned.

The FIA also interrogated the Summit Bank branch manager who claimed that he had opened the accounts on the instructions of then president of the bank, Lawai.

With this ruling, Maryam is barred from contesting the general elections.Her husband Captain (retd) Muhammad Safdar was also sentenced to one year of imprisonment.

Sharif and Maryam are in London since June 14 visiting the former’s wife, Kulsoom Nawaz, who is undergoing cancer treatment there.

According to the report, the defence lawyers have intimated their clients that the likelihood of getting any relief in the sentence would be difficult if they fail to return to Pakistan within ten days.