Calls to quit over Panama Papers link
Pakistan’s opposition leader Imran Khan has called on Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to resign, saying documents leaked from a Panama-based law firm indicate his sons own several offshore companies.
Khan warned he will stage a rally outside Sharif’s residence in the eastern city of Lahore if the prime minister does not quit. He attached no date to the ultimatum.
Information Minister Pervaiz Rashid rejected Khan's demand, saying Sharif will not quit over “baseless allegations.”
Khan, a former cricket star, is the leader of Pakistan Tahrik-e-Insaf, which made a strong showing in the 2013 elections.
Last week, Sharif announced the establishment of an independent judicial commission to probe whether his family illegally owns offshore companies and property, as indicated in the so-called Panama Papers.
The fallout of the Panama Papers continues to rumble across the globe. Iceland’s Prime Minister has resigned Sigmundur David Gunnlaugsson over his hidden offshore deal- ings, while British PM David Cameron faced stern questions over his investment in an offshore fund.
Spanish online news site El Confidencial meanwhile, published documents it says show that a former chairman of one of Spain’s largest banks used Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca to create an offshore company.
El Confidencial says it has obtained documents that outline how former Caja Madrid Chairman Miguel Blesa in 1989 used Mossack Fonseca to create Danforth Investments in the British Virgin Islands.
It says the documents show the purpose of Danforth was to invest in Spain-based companies such as aircraft manufacturer Construcciones Aeronavales SA and arms firm EINSA.
Caja Madrid was merged with seven other Spanish savings banks in 2011 to form Bankia SA, which later had to be nationalised and bailed out by the state for 18 billion euros ($24 billion). Blesa was chairman of Caja Madrid from 1996 to 2009 and has been under investigation for alleged irregularities in the bank since 2013.