Prime Minister Imran Khan said on Wednesday it was unfortunate that the Chief Justice of Pakistan and a "convict" were being invited to speak at the same event.
The premier made this remark at the Kamyab Jawan Convention 2021 in Islamabad, days after a controversy was created after PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif's address via a video link was disrupted when the live stream was abruptly stopped at the Asma Jahangir Conference in Lahore.
"There is a function in Lahore where the chief justice and Supreme Court judges are invited and who addresses that event? A man who has been convicted by the Supreme Court and who has absconded from the country," the prime minister said. "It is unfortunate."
He continued that a nation was destroyed when it stopped considering looting money a bad thing.
"When a nation's morals die, that nation dies."
In this regard, he also gave the example of the state of Madinah, the foundation for which, he said, was laid on the basis of differentiating between right and wrong and denouncing the bad.
"No one can wipe out a nation if its morality is intact," he remarked.
'Audio tape a drama'
Referring to the recent alleged audio clip of former chief justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar as a "drama", the premier said that it was necessary to understand where this started from.
"A country where the head, prime minister and ministers start stealing and taking public funds abroad [...] country's are not poor because of a lack of resources, they become poor when government officials start stealing from the people. Such a country can never progress."
Commenting on the Panama Papers data leak, the premier said that the investigation revealed that PML-N leader Maryam Nawaz owned four flats in London.
"Where did this money [for the apartments] come from?" he posed a rhetoric question, and continued: "You may call the courts bad, you may call the army bad and I have already been [dubbed] bad ... But answer from where did you get the money to buy those apartments."
The prime minister went on to say that he had been dragged to the court over an apartment he owned in the United Kingdom.
"[But] I submitted all the details [regarding the case] to the court," he added, pointing out that he had bought the apartment when he was a cricketer and not a public office holder. "[Yet] I produced all the receipts, but they (PML-N leaders) lied in the National Assembly [regarding their assets]."
"Not a single document [has been shared] that shows the means to buy the flats [owned by them]," he said.
'Opportunity to change lives'
According to state-run APP, the prime minister lauched four new projects for the uplift of the youth at the on the occasion. The projects include Kamyab Jawan Markaz, Kamyab Jawan Green Youth Movement, Kamyab Jawan Innovation League and Kamyab Jawan Talent Hunt Youth Sports League.
The prime minister said such projects gave the people an opportunity to develop skills, get loans to start the businesses and "change their lives".
Sharing his experiences and difficuilties he had faced throughout his career in cricket, politics and philanthropy, he said he was able to overcome all the challenges through hard work and because he dreamt big.
The premier also said that when he started his political journey 25 years ago, he found corruption to be the country's biggest problem.
"There was a corrupt system in place and that's why it is taking longer to make things right," he said, adding that the this nation, however, had great potential and was on its way to rise and "become something that was beyond imagination".