Lahore, November 8
Pakistan’s ailing former prime minister Nawaz Sharif has heeded doctors’ advice and given in to his family’s request to fly to London for the treatment of his diseases, his daughter Maryam Nawaz said on Friday.
Speaking to the media, she said the family could not risk the 69-year-old PML(N)supremo’s health and has decided to send him abroad.
Maryam, 46, said she would not accompany her father as her name was still on the Exit Control List (ECL).
“Shehbaz Sharif is looking after all the boarding and lodging of the former premier. After losing my mother last year, my father is my everything now,” a distraught Maryam was quoted as saying by the ARY News.
Sharif’s wife Kulsoom died of throat cancer in London last year.
Maryam, who was released on bail on Wednesday by the Lahore High Court (LHC), said Sharif himself agreed to get the medical treatment abroad due to his critical health condition.
Sharif was shifted to his Jati Umra Raiwind residence in Lahore on Wednesday after his two-week stay at a Pakistani hospital for treatment of multiple diseases. He was admitted to the Services Hospital in Lahore on October 22 from Pakistan’s anti-graft body’s custody after his platelets dropped to a critical low level of 2,000.
Speaking to reporters during her appearance at Lahore’s accountability court for the Chaudhry Sugar Mills case hearing, Maryam said Sharif should go abroad for his treatment at the earliest.
Asked if any request was put forward for the removal of the former premier’s name from the ECL, Maryam said: “I don’t know. I will look into it when I go home,” she said.
Earlier, a Sharif family member said the former premier might leave for London this week if his name was removed from the ECL by the government.
“Though Mr Sharif was not ready to go abroad after the recommendations of the medical board of the Services Hospital and the medics of the Sharif Medical City and the ‘request’ of his family members, he has finally agreed,” he was quoted as saying by the Dawn newspaper.
The PML-N will file a request to remove Sharif’s name from the ECL.
The application will be filed by Shehbaz and it was initially said that it would be filed on Saturday but the government confirmed having received the application on Friday. If the government approves the request, Sharif will leave the country next week, Samaa TV reported.
His medical reports were sent to doctors in London earlier and they have advised him to come to London for treatment as soon as possible.
According to government sources, Sharif’s request will be evaluated on humanitarian grounds.
“We have received the request. We’ll start processing it next week. It will take three to four days to see some progress,” confirmed Punjab government’s spokesperson Usman Basra.
“We will also look at the medical reports and doctors’ advice,” he said.
Naeemul Haque, prime minister Imran Khan’s special assistant on political affairs, has said the premier has no issue if Sharif wants to travel abroad.
“The decision on whether to remove his name from the ECL should be made today,” he said.
Haque also said that the government had already made a decision on whether to send Sharif abroad for treatment.
“He is very sick and he should go to London to get treated. Our prayers are with him,” he said.
The Sharif family approached the Ministry of Interior, requesting the removal of Sharif’s name from the ECL to pave way for the three-time prime minister to fly abroad for medical treatment.
Sharif suffered an angina attack during his hospitalisation and also suffers from diabetes.
Sharif was lodged in the Kot Lakhpat jail but last month he was sent to the custody of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) which is probing the Sharif family in the Chaudhry Sugar Mills corruption case.
On December 24, 2018, an accountability court had sentenced Sharif to seven years in prison in the Al-Azizia Steel Mills corruption case and acquitted him in the Flagship case.
On October 25, the Lahore High Court granted bail to Sharif, in the Chaudhry Sugar Mills case, who was undergoing treatment after being diagnosed with an acute immune disorder.
On October 29, the Islamabad High Court suspended Sharif’s sentence in the Al-Azizia corruption case for eight weeks on medical grounds.
The Sharif family has denied all corruption charges and termed them as politically motivated. PTI
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