–Khawaja Haris calls JIT head ‘dishonest’, sparks verbal spat with prosecution
ISLAMABAD: Tempers flared in the accountability court during the hearing of the Al-Azizia and Flagship Investments corruption references on Tuesday after the head of the Panamagate JIT, Wajid Zia, admitted that the investigators did not have documents related to the cash flows and retained earnings of the Hill Metal Establishment company owned by the sons of former premier Nawaz Sharif.
Accountability Court-II Judge Mohammad Arshad Malik resumed hearing of the two references on Tuesday during which Nawaz’s counsel Khawaja Haris continued cross-examination of the prosecution’s star witness Wajid Zia.
During the course of the proceedings, Khawaja Haris called Wajid Zia a ‘dishonest’ man after which harsh words were exchanged between the two sides. When the NAB prosecutor objected to Haris’s use of the word ‘dishonest’ for his witness, the lead defence counsel offered to retract it. However, Wajid Zia told Haris there was no need to take back his words as “it was his profession”.
During the cross-examination, Zia revealed that the picture of Nawaz’s son Hussain Nawaz during interrogation was leaked from the JIT office, however he refused to reveal the name of the responsible person.
Responding to another question, Zia said that “I am unable to produce any document or evidence before the court to show the cash flows and retained earnings of Hill Metal Establishment in any financial year.”
Earlier, Judge Arshad had deferred hearing of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) references on Monday as Khawaja Haris was busy in the Supreme Court (SC) regarding extension in the cases’ duration. Meanwhile, the SC had allowed six more weeks to the NAB court to conclude the trial against the Sharif family.