Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif Saturday said that the “double standards” of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) pushed the country towards destruction.
The Bab-e-Pakistan project, a national landmark, and the upgrading of Walton Road in Lahore were both dedicated at the ceremony where the prime minister made these statements.
The premier highlighted concerns about the NAB’s performance while discussing the suspected corruption in this project, questioning why it targeted innocent people while failing to call those responsible.
“I wish no one goes to NAB’s akhuwat khana, not even my enemy. Innocent people were pushed against the wall. [But] this project, where billions were misappropriated, did NAB look into the elements who indulged in corruption in this project?”
“It was the double standards that had caused harm to Pakistan. The rule of ‘might is right’ must be buried forever by the 220 million people of the country,” he said, adding the country could not move ahead on the path of progress and prosperity unless they collectively resist these tendencies.
PM Shehbaz recognized that they were living through a difficult time, but he was certain that they would come through it by working together, making sacrifices, and working hard.
He stated that everyone in society, especially the wealthy class, must step forward and generously support the country, adding that there was no other way to get there but by upholding these qualities.
The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) came into office in 1997, which sped up construction on the Bab-e-Pakistan project. According to the prime minister, Nawaz Sharif lay its foundation stone in 1991.
PM Shehbaz expressed disappointment that this area was still in ruins and added that this was intended to be a destination for local and foreign tourists and that a memorial and library would have been located there.
Shehbaz Sharif claimed that Pervez Musharraf informed him that this monument would require the importation of white stone from Italy valued at Rs900 million.
“When I asked why, the consultant said that without this granite, the creation of Pakistan is unimaginable. I told him that Pakistan could not afford this. He replied that nothing can be done now and that they have given an order. I also gave him an order that this Italian granite will not be imported. That person filed a complaint against me,” said the premier.
The PM said he refused to carry on with the project with that said consultant, adding that the contractor was a “fraud” who had no experience but was given the project without bidding.
At the beginning of his speech, the prime minister discussed the location’s history, noting that they had once again gathered in this location in support of the separate homeland that millions of migrating Muslims from the subcontinent had fought to establish under the great leadership of Quaid-e-Azam.
The prime minister claimed that while traveling to the newly established country, hundreds of women and children had to endure the worst type of bloodshed.
The prime minister referred to the Walton route when he remarked that it was there that hundreds of Indian migrants sought safety, and the villagers helped them, reviving the Ansar-e-Madina example.
The unique precedent would always be remembered, he added.