LAHORE: An accountability court on Friday issued bailable arrest warrants for former prime minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf in a National Accountability Bureau (NAB) case wherein he is accused of making illegal appointments in the Gujranwala Electric Power Company (GEPCO) during his stint as federal minister for water and power.
As the hearing went underway, defense counsel requested for for a court exemption for the former premier citing health issues. However, duty judge Jawadul Hassan rejected the application from Ashraf’s lawyer and instead issued his arrest warrants.
“[The] case has entered its final stages and he should have appeared today,” the judge remarked.
Anti-graft prosecutor Waris Ali Janjua appeared on behalf of the accountability watchdog.
According to NAB reference, the PPP stalwart is accused of misusing his powers and appointing 437 people in GEPCO from his electoral constituency, Rawalpindi city of Gujar Khan, “without any consideration for merit”.
Former water and power secretary Shahid Rafi, former directors of Gepco’s boards of governors including Saleem Arif, Malik Muhammad Razi Abbas and Wazir Ali nominated in the reference which was filed in 2016.
Following the issuance of the arrest warrants, the court adjourned proceedings till Sept 18.