Freedom of the press

After Junaid Safdar’s wedding announcement, Maryam’s rivals spread fake stories about Ayesha Saifur Rehman’s father and mother

Sharif family is being targeted by its political opponents after Maryam Nawaz announced that her son Junaid Safdar is getting married to Ayesha Saifur Rehman, the daughter of Saifur Rehman, a controversial figure who headed anti-corruption watchdog during Nawaz Sharif’s second stint as the prime minister of Pakistan.

While little is known about Ayesha Saifur Rehman, speculations started doing rounds on social media about her family which is based in Qatar.

Pro-government social media users started hashtag trends against Maryam Nawaz and various WhatsApp groups were flooded with unconfirmed false stories about Saifur Rehman.

An Urdu language article about the relations between Nawaz Sharif and Saifur Rehman is one of the highly forwarded messages in Pakistan right now.

After stating that Saif helped Sharifs establish friendly relations with the Qatari royal family in the 90s, it goes on to claim that the former chief of Ehtesaab Bureau’s wife has changed her name on her Identity Card for Overseas Pakisanis.

It says that Saifur Rehman’s wife Manizah Saif got her name changed to Manizah Safdar as Sharif family plans to transfer their flats in her name in order to protect its wealth.

Written by Hijab Randhawa, the article offers nothing to corroborate the claims made against the Sharif family. The Urdu text being circulated accompany two blurred photos of purported identity cards of Sairfu Rehman’s wife, which again prove nothing.

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