Pemra to take action if any channel air speech of an absconder, warns Shibli ahead of Opp’s APC

September 19, 2020 10:35 PM

Minister for Information and Broadcasting Shibli Faraz said Saturday Pemra will take action if any channel or medium aired the speech of an absconder.

Addressing a news conference along with Adviser on Interior Shahzad Akbar in Islamabad on Saturday, Faraz said the All Parties Conference (APC) of opposition would be a gathering of accused and losers which wanted to create law and order situation and chaos in the country.

He said there is a law that no channel or medium can air the speech of an absconder. He sighted a petition in Lahore High Court according to which Under PLD 2016 no absconder can give interview or statement on a TV channel.

The information minister said the convicted people of PP and PML-N have no moral right to talk on media.

Faraz said the opposition parties want to stoke anarchy and confusion as well as create law and order situation in the country to achieve their vested interests.

Referring to opposition's All Parties Conference to be held tomorrow, he said such gatherings have failed in the past and the result of the latest one will also be zero.

He said the opposition wanted to rule the country to protect its illegal wealth and properties but the result of the APC would be zero.

A person who was convicted will make a speech through video link in the APC, Shibli said adding the opposition was trying to put pressure on the government to get relief in the cases of corruption.

Alluding to Nawaz Sharif, Faraz said he is a convicted person who fled the country on the pretext of indisposition. He said the government is ready to sit with the opposition for legislation and public welfare but no compromise will be made on corruption.

Faraz said Prime Minister Imran Khan had said that he was ready to sit with the opposition on any issue but he would not compromise on corruption.

He said the government had achieved successes, revived the economy, exports and remittances were increasing and economic indicators were improving.

The government overcame the issue of coronavirus and then revived the economy – a feat not accomplished by any other government in the world, the minister added. Shibli said the government negotiated with the power producer companies to provide cheap electricity and gas to the people.

He said Prime Minister Khan announced incentives for the construction sector and the government would fulfil its promise to build five million houses by the time it would complete its term.

He said Nawaz Sharif destroyed the country and brought the economy to the verge of bankruptcy while staying inside and Altaf Hussain damaged the country while he sat abroad.

The government of Pakistan Tehreek e Insaf (PTI) was transparent and committed and working for the development of the country, the minister added.

To a question, he said regional newspapers were nursery for journalism. “We will request the governments of Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to facilitate the regional newspapers within the set parameters.”

He said the joint sitting of the Parliament passed the anti-terrorism and money laundering bills to meet the requirements of Financial Action Task Force (FATF). The legislation was done in the best interest of the country and to take Pakistan out of the grey list, he said adding the previous rulers did not pass legislation on money laundering to serve their own interests and FATF put Pakistan in the grey list.

The opposition was exposed because of the way it opposed the FATF related legislation, he noted.

Adviser to the Prime Minister on Interior and Accountability Shehzad Akbar said FATF was represented by countries which review each other’s laws to see whether these meet the requirements to counter money laundering and terror financing.

He said Pakistan had a FATF secretariat represented by different institutions and worked on ways to stop money laundering. As a responsible government, it was its duty to pass the FATF related legislation, he added. Shehzad said the government held discussions with the opposition for the last one year on the FATF related laws.

The opposition wanted 34 amendments in the NAB law, he said adding the government passed the laws with the support of the people despite the resistance of the opposition.

Shehzad said due to loopholes in the money laundering law, there were issues of fake accounts. FATF had a booklet mentioning steps to stop money laundering and the government also made provisions in the law to this effect, he added.

“PTI wants Pakistan to be out of the grey list and stop money laundering.”

He said opposition tried to stop money laundering cases of Shehbaz Sharif, Asif Zardari, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and others by proposing amendments in the law. The opposition wanted that NAB should not be an investigation agency for the offences of money laundering, he added.

He denied that there was a new provision in law to put a person in jail for six months. He said institutions could arrest an individual for different crimes and money laundering was made a cognizable offence to avoid delay in the investigation.

He clarified that in the age of media and in the presence of journalists and cameras, it was not possible to count wrongly in the Parliament for passage of bills.

Shehzad said participants of the APC including Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, Asif Zardari and Ahsan Iqbal were accused while Nawaz Sharif was a convict.

The agenda of the APC was that the opposition wanted a change in the NAB laws and was seeking powers to appoint judges of its own choosing, he added.

Shehzad Akbar said the application of investigation techniques was introduced in line with the demand of FATF.

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