Shahzad Akbar’s performance ‘zero’: Riaz

The News

ISLAMABAD: PTI MNA of Jahangir Tareen Humkhayal Group (JTHG) Raja Riaz Ahmad Wednesday accused Prime Minister’s Accountability Adviser Shahzad Akbar of targeting the members of the ruling as well as other parties, saying he had failed to perform.

Speaking in the Geo News programme Capital Talk, Riaz said the JTHG had its parliamentary leader in the Punjab Assembly, and warned that a parliamentary leader could also be made in the National Assembly if excesses were committed at the federal level.

He said they had their group in the National Assembly also, but not a parliamentary leader as the assurances given by Prime Minister Imran Khan were being realised at the federal level. Barrister Ali Zafar was having long meetings with the group members and patiently listening to them, Riaz added.

He alleged Shahzad Akbar was responsible for all actions against the JTHG, and urged Prime Minister Imran Khan to be aware of conspirators who were creating mistrust and confusion.

Riaz said he could not figure how Shahzad Akbar landed in the government, and from where and why. All the cases he filed against PML-N, PML-Q or PTI were turning out to be baseless. He contended that bails were being granted in cases made by Shahzad. He predicted Hudaibiya Paper Mills case would also embarrass Shahzad as nothing would come out of it. “No one knows why he is targeting PTI people,” he said.

He acknowledged Imran Khan had worked extremely hard to form PTI, but the way Shahzad Akbar was working, “he should have some mercy for God’s sake”. He added that if Shahbaz had a strong case, then he must ensure it reached its logical conclusion with some recoveries, but he could not recover even a single rupee.

“Imran does not to resort to political vengeance. He is a gentleman and does not see through conspiracies. Instead of delivering, we have entangled ourselves in accountability. PML-N says that the entire Ring Road has been drafted by Shahzad Akbar and many politicians, including Zulfi Bukhari and Ghulam Sarwar Khan, are mentioned in it,” he pointed out.

He said: “Ghulam Sarwar should have stood with us. He would say he was with us, but did not take a stand with us. Probably, he was being targeted now. Shahzad tried to dig out things against me, but failed.” Riaz added that Imran Khan told him: “You are an honest man”.

Giving background of the whole episode, Riaz said that because of Punjab government’s actions against the MPAs of the JTHG, they wanted to have a separate group and a parliamentary leader in the provincial assembly who could speak on their behalf. Saeed Akbar Nawani would the parliamentary leader of the group who would be speaking on Friday in the assembly, Riaz added.

“Prime Minister had said in a recent interaction with the group members that there would be no injustice from the provincial or federal government against them (JTHG). The PM had said making a group was not something big and JTHG are part of PTI. We followed the PM’s advice against going to the media,” he noted.

In response to what Raja Riaz said, Shahzad Akbar said: “Accountability is the central plank of PTI. Accountability means nothing if it’s not across the board. Blaming Shahzad Akbar is not the answer to questions being asked.”

He emphasized that the independence of investigating agencies that the PM had put in place would be following the law in its spirit in the same manner even if Shahzad Akbar were not there.

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