The federal cabinet approved on Tuesday the constitution of an inquiry commission to investigate the Broadsheet issue.
Information Minister Shibli Faraz made the announcement at a media briefing in Islamabad. The commission is being set up under the Commission of Inquiry Act, 2017, he added.
UK-based firm Broadsheet LLC was hired in 2000 by General Pervez Musharraf’s government to recover assets stolen by the past Pakistani governments.
The contract expired in 2003 and the firm alleged it was not paid. It sued Pakistan in the London Court of International Arbitration in 2016 and won an award of $21 million in 2019. Islamabad appealed the decision in the London High Court and the award was increased to $33 million.
British authorities recently seized $28.7 million from the Pakistan High Commission’s account and the rest remains payable.
Last week, the government appointed Justice (retired) Azmat Saeed the head of the Broadsheet inquiry committee. But the opposition, particularly the PML-N, has strongly objected to his appointment.
Saeed had been working as the deputy prosecutor general of NAB when the anti-corruption watchdog signed an agreement with Broadsheet LLC, according to information on the Supreme Court of Pakistan’s website.
On Tuesday, PM Imran Khan told cabinet members that only Justice (retired) Saeed will investigate the Broadsheet issue, according to sources within the ruling PTI. A few cabinet members had proposed a
three-member inquiry commission instead.
The premier said it was a serious matter and vowed not to forgive the ones who were responsible.