The verdict in the two remaining corruption references – Al Azizia and Flagship Investment – against deposed prime minister Nawaz Sharif is expected to be announced after 2:30pm on Monday.
The verdict was expected earlier today but has been delayed multiple times.
Judge Arshad Malik of Accountability Court No2 had reserved the verdict on Wednesday after the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) concluded its final arguments on Tuesday.
A large number of PML-N supporters are present nearby at the Dhoke Kashmirian signal and are being barred from moving towards the accountability court by security personnel. Till now, no untoward incident has been reported.
The Al Azizia and Flagship references were filed against members of the Sharif family in September 2017
Sharif arrived in Islamabad from Lahore on Sunday and met his younger brother and Leader of Opposition in the National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif at the Ministers’ Enclave.
In view of the July 28, 2017 verdict, the trial of Sharif has been monitored by the apex court. Justice Ijazul Ahsan is the monitoring judge, who supervised the trial of the PML-N supremo.
The accountability court had shared the progress report of the trial with the monitoring judge every month.
On the other hand, the Sharif family’s legal team consistently expressed reservations over the supervision of the trials by the SC judge.
Khawaja Haris, the counsel for Sharif, contended in his arguments on a review petition before the five-judge larger bench that supervision of the accountability court’s proceedings would affect a fair trial.
The counsel alleged that the SC itself had become the complainant, prosecutor and judge in the matter.
In its July 28 verdict, the SC asked the accountability court to decide the four references within six months. NAB filed the references within the stipulated time.
However, the accountability court got the eighth extension to complete the trial.
Legal experts wondered why the accountability court announced the verdict in one reference (Avenfield) before the general elections. In view of that judgement, both Sharif and Maryam Nawaz were put behind bars but later both were granted bail by the Islamabad High Court. Now the matter is pending in the apex court.