PML demands discussion of match-fixing scandal in Assembly

Updated: Aug 30, 2010, 20:33 PM IST

Lahore: Pakistan’s main opposition party, the Nawaz Sharif-led Muslim League (PML) on Monday submitted an adjournment motion with the Speaker of the National Assembly, demanding discussion on the latest match-fixing scandal to have hit the national cricket team in England.

Two senators, Zahid Khan and Ismail Buledi also submitted similar motions in the Senate as anger grew over the latest scandal in which some Pakistani players have been accused of taking bribes to ‘spot-fix’ matches in England.

A 35-year old Pakistani-origin Englishman, Mazhar Majeed made these allegations. He was arrested on Saturday for trying to defraud bookmakers but was released on bail on Sunday.

Captain Salman Butt, Mohammad Aamir, Kamran Akmal, Mohammad Asif and some other players have been alleged to be involved with Mazhar in ‘spot-fixing’.

The lawmakers in their adjournment motions noted that the latest scandal had brought shame and disrespect to the country.

They also demanded action against Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Ejaz Butt and national team manager Yawar Saeed.

Iqbal Mohammad Ali, who heads the National Assembly standing committee on sports, said Butt need to be removed immediately as PCB chief and the accused players should be escorted back home in handcuffs.

Ali told reporters in Islamabad after a meeting of the committee that the members have decided to resign if the chief patron of the board, President Asif Zardari did not remove
Butt immediately.

“The committee today decided that the government should impose an ad-hoc body to run cricket affairs and that Butt should be removed. The players who have brought a bad name to the country should be treated like criminals,” he said.

“Unless the government acts on our recommendations we have decided to resign,” he stated.

The committee has already sent a letter to the government, demanding to send a high level investigation team of the Federal Investigation Agency to London to probe the allegations.

Interior Minister Rehman Malik has announced that a three-member FIA team was going to London for investigations.