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‘Behind Closed Doors’: Arshad Sharif’s engagement with John Allan Namu

Before his untimely demise, renowned Pakistani journalist Arshad Sharif was working on an explosive investigative documentary on corruption titled ‘Behind Closed Doors’ that featured celebrated Kenyan investigative journalist John Allan Namu.

Via a tweet, Namu conceded he’d worked with the deceased on the investigative piece, despite having never met him in person. 

It was reported by a Pakistan publication that Arshad Sharif had left Pakistan in August and was running his own YouTube channel when he appeared in the trailer of a documentary about corruption titled “Behind Closed Doors.”

Also read:  Slain Pakistani journalist Arshad Sharif ‘interviewed’ John Allan Namu on investigative story

The nearly two-minute-long cinematic trailer, which appears as the prologue of a documentary, has been making rounds on the internet since its release. The documentary, which revolves around alleged corruption by ruling party leaders, depicts how politicians used the international financial system and offshore jurisdictions to launder their ill-gotten wealth.

Hours after the death of Arshad Sharif, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Chairman took to Twitter, where he shared a series of tweets alongside his statesmen. The defiant politician, who is also facing terror charges, said he was shocked at the ‘brutal murder’ of the slain journalist.

One of his tweets alleged that Sharif had to leave the country and be in hiding abroad but continued to speak the truth on social media, exposing the powerful.

However, former prime minister Imran Khan condemned the senior journalist’s death, saying he paid the ‘ultimate price for speaking the truth and exposing the powerful’.

Condemnation poured in as Arshad Sharif, known for criticizing the incumbent government and institutions, had left the South Asian country earlier this year after being booked in the sedition cases.

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Khan also demanded a proper judicial investigation, adding we have descended into a state of brutality, unknown in civilized society, indulged in by the powerful against those who dare to criticise and expose wrongdoings.

The documentary, directed by Michael Oswald, and produced and written by Murtaza Mehdi offers the first glimpse into a corrupt system in Pakistan, which caught the attention of many across the globe, including celebrities and politicians.

It was initially reported that Netflix was set to release the documentary. However, several other reports claimed that the leading streaming service was yet to confirm its release.

As the fans and supporters of ousted premier Imran Khan seemed thrilled, a cliched debate of the alleged corruption by the Sharif brothers also garnered attention.

A YouTube channel first released the trailer, while the production house’s site said,

“Politically Exposed Persons (PEPs) are people who hold a public function and as a result present higher risks of being involved in bribery or corruption. Offshore leaks have repeatedly revealed that PEPs use British finance and British offshore jurisdictions to launder their wealth, hide their wealth and re-invest it into the global financial system.

London is the place where they buy property, where they take legal action against their critics, and where they live when they fall from grace.”

Also read: How Pakistani journalist was killed in Kenya 

It also mentioned that the film has contributions from PTI chief Imran Khan, Pakistani journalist Arshad Sharif, Kenyan journalist John-Allan Namu, Tom Stocks, Rachel Davies Teka, Fawad Chaudry, Emin Huseynov, Shazad Akbar, and Irfan Hashmi.

Former Information minister Fawad Chaudhry shared the trailer on his Twitter account and announced that Behind Closed Doors is “coming soon”. 

Also read: Man accused of conning Pakistani Sh14m in fake gold deal

The documentary trailer opens up with Kenyan journalist John-Allan Namu saying, “How it has been described is that there has been one rule for the elite especially the elite that is connected to power and other for everybody else, I think I will leave it at that.”

In the trailer, Arshad Sharif is heard saying, “Accounts were opened in the name of these low-level low-wage employees who do not come into the tax net. Money used to be deposited in those accounts and finally, they used to land in the accounts of either Mr. Hamza Shahbaz, Mr. Salman Shahbaz, or Mr. Shehbaz Sharif himself. They said people used to come with gunmen into the banks.”

Irfan Hashmi calls London the second ‘house of Sharifs’. Another journalist also calls London “a money launderer’s paradise.”

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