ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) has said that the photocopy of a residence permit, or Iqama, showing former president Asif Ali Zardari as partner or employee in a private UAE firm is fake, fabricated and photo-shopped to malign and discredit him and the party.
“It is the handiwork of those who wish to bring into disrepute the entire political class,” said PPP spokesman Senator Farhatullah Babar in a statement on Saturday. “This is most reprehensible and is deeply deplored and condemned,” he added.
He said that Zardari had been validly granted visa by the Ministry of Presidential Affairs, Abu Dhabi on the basis of which he stayed in the UAE.
The former president “does not hold any visa or residence permit as an employee or partner in some private firm as wrongly claimed in the fake Iqama doing the rounds on social media”, he said.
After Nawaz Sharif’s disqualification as prime minister by the Supreme Court, “a vicious and mysterious campaign seems to have been mounted by vested interests to malign and discredit elected representatives of the people and the political class as a whole”, he said.
Babar said that launching such a malicious campaign against the former president, the PPP and the political class as a whole would do no good either to those behind it or to the country.
Those wishing to paint black Zardari, the PPP and the elected representatives should pause, ponder and look inward as they also might have skeletons in their closet, he said, adding, “If they do that, they might realise that they too have many questions to answer, but have escaped accountability.”