Fawad explains report on PTI funding, says ECP erred thumbnail

Fawad explains report on PTI funding, says ECP erred

Federal Information and Broadcasting Minister Fawad Chaudhry has rejected the claims from the opposition that a scrutiny committee report submitted with the Election Commission of Pakistan had proved “corruption” charges against the PTI.

“I would like to make one thing clear that this report includes the funding from PML-N’s tenure before PTI formed government,” he said. “The funding has nothing to do with the government or any corruption.”

The scrutiny committee report has accused the PTI of hiding a majority of its bank accounts. The committee had submitted its report to the Election Commission of Pakistan in November 2021 after a probe, but the ECP on Tuesday ordered it to be made public.

Fawad Chaudhry was addressing a press conference in Islamabad accompanied by Federal Minister Farrukh Habib after the ECP orders.

The information minister offered an explanation on the the transactions pointed out by the ECP’s scrutiny committee. “The report probed a total of 26 bank accounts and eight of them are non-functional,” he said.

The PTI has a total of 18 bank accounts, eight of them are declared and the rest of the 10 bank accounts are not PTI accounts “in a way”, the minister added.

“Six bank accounts are subsidiary accounts and counted as a separate entities and the remaining four accounts have been disowned by PTI,” he maintained.

The report by ECP’s scrutiny committee has revealed that the party had received Rs1.64 billion in funding but it did not disclose funding worth more than Rs310 million to the election body, TV chanels reported earlier in the day.

The PTI leader claimed that the scrutiny committee has counted the Rs310 million twice because the amount was deposited into the PTI’s central account from where it was transferred to the other accounts.

“The report made a duplicity of this Rs310 million,” Fawad added.
He said that the party will make this argument in ECP and it will clear the “doubts”.

Fawad urged the ECP to create a party funding comparison between the Pakistan Peoples Party, Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf.

“The PPP and PMLN accounts should also be scrutinized and even those of other parties including JUI-F and TLP,” he said.

‘PPP, PMLN operated secret accounts’

Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Farrukh Habib added that ECP should order scrutiny committees to submit their reports regarding the PML-N and PPP to the commission.

“Facts should come forth as to why nine party accounts of the PML-N and 11 accounts of the PPP were kept secret,” Habib said. “These facts should not be concealed.”

Earlier in the day, Minister for Planning, Development, and Special Initiatives Asad Umar said PTI has the “most transparent” process of receiving funds as everything “was and is documented.”

The commission must do its work in the most transparent and impartial way as it will reflect on Pakistani politics, he stressed.

He, also, demanded the ECP to review reports prepared for PPP and PMLN bank accounts.

“There are a large number of secret accounts of the PPP and PML-N in addition to other accounts opened in the names of fake persons,” he said.

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