Former prime minister joins increasing list of politicians who have contracted the disease
Former prime minister Yousaf Raza Gilani on Saturday became the latest senior politician to confirm testing positive for the novel coronavirus.
Gilani’s son, Kasim Gilani, confirmed the news on Twitter. “Thank you Imran Khan’s government and National Accountability Bureau! You have successfully put my father’s life in danger. His COVID-19 result came positive,” he posted.
Gilani’s reference to NAB refers to his father’s appearance before a court on Friday in the Toshakhana reference. Gilani, as well as former president Asif Ali Zardari and former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, have been accused by NAB of misusing official gifts given to them by foreign states.
Gilani had filed an application in the court requesting a permanent exemption from appearance in the case because of the COVID-19 threat.
In addition to Gilani, former cricketer Shahid Afridi also announced he had tested positive for the coronavirus. “I’ve been feeling unwell since Thursday; my body had been aching badly. I’ve been tested and unfortunately I’m COVID positive. Need prayers for a speedy recovery,” he posted on Twitter.
Similarly, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Assembly Speaker Mushtaq Ghani has also tested positive for COVID-19, with source within his family saying he has been quarantined at home.
There have been a growing number of politicians testing positive for COVID-19 in recent days. Former National Assembly Speaker Ayaz Sadiq, former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, PMLN President Shahbaz Sharif, PMLN Secretary General Ahsan Iqbal, and PMLN spokesperson Marriyum Aurangzeb have all tested positive for coronavirus in the past week.
From the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, Sindh MPA Khurram Sher Zaman has tested positive for the virus, as has Minister of State for Narcotics Shehryar Afridi, and its chief whip in the National Assembly Aamir Dogar.
Railways Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed and PTI MNA Jai Prakash have also contracted the infection.