Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif announced that he will not appear before the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) for inquiry into references against the Sharif family on orders of the Supreme Court in the Panama case verdict.

Nawaz Sharif’s daughter Maryam Nawaz, son-in-law Captain (retd) Safdar, and Finance Minister Ishaq Dar have also refused to appear before the anti-graft watchdog.

The counsel for the Sharif family, Malik Amjad Pervez, on Tuesday submitted his reply with NAB on their behalf, maintaining that according to the National Accountability Ordinance, the application should be scrutinised thoroughly and all documentary evidence should be seen before proceedings are initiated.

The reply said that the legal procedure was not properly undertaken before initiating the corruption references against Nawaz Sharif and the other respondents, and the several steps were overlooked which would term the proceedings as illegal.

Nawaz Sharif and other respondents informed NAB that an appeal has been filed in the Supreme Court over the verdict which disqualified him. Therefore, all proceedings should be halted until a verdict over the appeal plea by the apex court.

The reply further said that it is the prerogative of the NAB chairman to initiate corruption references and refer it to an accountability court. However, this has also not been implemented against the Sharif family.