Ex-spymaster ‘real beneficiary’ of Al-Qadir Trust scam, Vawda alleges

ISLAMABAD: Former federal minister Faisal Vawda claimed on Wednesday that former spymaster retired Lt Gen Faiz Hamid was the real beneficiary of the multi-billion dollar Al-Qadir Trust scam.

Speaking after appearing before the National Accountability Bureau in the £190m corruption case to record his statement, he claimed that former ISI chief Faiz Hameed was the “architect” and the “mastermind” of the corruption case.

He said many names were being taken in the media pertaining to the case, including Shahzad Akbar, Imran Khan and others.

“But one name which everyone has forgotten is that of the architect and designer of all this, who benefitted the most from this corruption scam. His name is Faiz Hamid and you know he was the former DG ISI,” Mr Vawda alleged.

Claims Gen Hamid facilitated Shahzad Akbar’s escape

The former PTI leader, alluding to the Al Qadir Trust case, claimed that this was a “very small case” as further investigations would reveal even bigger crimes. “If there is a man whose salary began from Rs100 before the start of his career and then he went on to become someone earning Rs10,000 and gained assets worth Rs100 million, I don’t think you need to go far.”

Mr Vawda said he only pointed out Hamid’s personal assets and displayed responsibility by not expounding on his “other deplorable crimes”. He added that his claim could be verified if any agency would evaluate Hamid’s assets in his native town, Chakwal.

“If you’re moving forward for Pakistan’s sake, then by and large there will be accountability across the board. It won’t happen that there will be [accountability] of politicians, police officials, bureaucrats, media persons and businessmen while some people will remain above the law,” he added. He also claimed that Hamid facilitated Mr Akbar’s escape from Pakistan.

During his media talk, Faisal Vawda criticised President Dr Arif Alvi as well for creating “misunderstandings”.

“I had warned Imran Khan before about “snakes” in his party, who would be holding press conferences soon, to condemn May 9 violence,” he added.

NAB alleges that the PTI government struck a deal with Malik Riaz that caused a loss of more than £190m to the national exchequer, in a quid pro quid arrangement with the real estate businessman.

The case alleges that Mr Khan and his spouse Bushra Bibi obtained billions of rupees and hundreds of kanals of land from Bahria Town Ltd to legalise his crime proceeds. The case also involves the role of former accountability czar Shahzad Akbar in the repatriation of the Rs50bn.

Published in Dawn, May 25th, 2023