The First Family is innocent and 100 per cent Panama free. Any accusations against them are simply the product of the feverish imagination of Imran Khan and his pathological hatred of the Sharifs, progress, motorways and Pakistan itself. We also know that this hatred is because of the shadowy powers of the global anti-Pakistan Zionist alliance that backs Khan. And we know all this because our money is being spent to tell us that this is so.

Okay to be fair the Zionist connection was revealed by the many ‘defence’ ministers of the federal government (their main duty does seem to be to defend the Sharifs), and not by the multimillion-rupee TV and print ads that our tax money has paid for. Personally I don’t mind making this kind of sacrifice for the cause of democracy and the amorphous ‘system’ that is continually imperiled by enemies, both domestic and foreign.

One such enemy plan was exposed via massive newspaper ads when the ICIJ made a groveling apology for mistakenly mentioning that ‘the prime ministers of Iceland and Pakistan’ controlled offshore companies. This was proof positive that the panama leaks were simply a smear campaign against our prime minister and that all accusations made against him and his family were as fake as Tony Blairs’ smile.

Oh sure, the ICIJ claims it made no such apology and that the mistake was a simple ‘editing error’ and sure no one had actually accused the Sharif of owning offshore companies in the first place (those belong to his children) but we know better. After all, we paid for the ads that tell us so.

The Krauts are part of this conspiracy too, as evidenced by the German newspaper Suddeutsche Zeitung publishing documents that ‘reaffirmed’ Maryam Nawaz Sharif’s involvement in the Panama Papers scandal. Sure, the German journalists claim they did so because doubts were being raised about her involvement, but we – or rather Daniyal Aziz- know that in actuality it was the influence of Imran Khan’s late, ex-father-in-law that forced the Germans to do so, possibly as part of extended reparations following World War Two.

Naturally the British are part of this scheme as well, which was conclusively proven when BBC Urdu ran a story saying that the Park Lane flats at the center of the Panama case had been owned by the Sharifs since the 1990s. This story was so skewed and ‘regurgitated’ that the BBC even launched an internal investigation against the reporter responsible, a certain Athar Kazmi, and BBC editors wore sackcloth and hair shirts for an entire weekend as penance.

The latter bit may be embellishment on my part, but the part about the investigation is absolutely true because it was reported by the Associated Press of Pakistan, our ‘premier Government News Agency’. You know; the one we pay for. And because it’s ours, we should all ignore the BBC’s rebuttal in which they deny the existence of any such inquiry and claim that the report met the BBC’s ‘journalistic values and editorial standards.’ Damningly, they remain silent on the question of sackcloth and hair shirts. Perfidious Albion, indeed.

But all this fake news aside, what we really absolutely and without any thought whatsoever must place our faith in is the popularity of the prime minister. Don’t trust the politicians or party workers when they claim that the Lion King reigns supreme, but at least credit the absolute impartiality of the International Republican Institute (IRI) which recently released a survey clearly stating that the Sharif had a 63 per cent approval rating, far ahead of Imran Khan’s paltry 39 per cent and Bilawal’s measly 32 per cent.

Amid the ensuing crowing by Sharif’s supporters and wailing by opponents, we should simply ignore that no such survey has been uploaded or even mentioned on any of the IRI’s websites. If you’re still sceptical, please keep your cynicism to yourself unless you want to pay for another spate of multi-million rupee ads to tell you why you are wrong.

This article was published in the Herald's March 2017 issue. To read more subscribe to the Herald in print.

The writer is a journalist and co-host of the TV talk show, Zara Hut Kay. He tweets @ZarrarKhuhro