LAHORE - Renowned lawyer Asma Jahangir on Sunday refused to continue as counsel for former Ambassador to the US Husain Haqqani in the memogate case.

In an interview with a private TV channel, Asma said that she did not trust the high-powered commission formed by the Supreme Court to investigate the memo affair, alleging that the Supreme Court judges were under the establishment’s influence.

Asma said that Husain Haqqani feared the powerful spy agencies may force him into giving a statement of their liking. This fear was the reason behind the former ambassador’s stay at the prime minister’s house, she said. The layer said she had told Haqqani to find another counsel to represent him in the top court as well as the judicial commission.

A nine-judge bench of the Supreme Court headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry last week formed a commission comprising the Chief Justices of the High Courts of Islamabad, Balochistan and Sindh for investigating the memo matter.

Asma said that the Supreme Court’s decision on the memogate petition was a victory for the country’s establishment. The law was being used to transform the country into a ‘security state’, she said.

She accused the judges of the apex court were acting as acolytes of the establishment. “And if nine judges of the Supreme Court can be (under their influence), then I am sorry to say I cannot have any expectations from High Court judges, who are under (the apex court judges).”

“Should we close our eyes? Should we allow ourselves to be fooled?... I have told my client he can appear before the commission if he wants to, and he will go. I have no confidence at all (in the commission),” Asma told local media. “This is the court’s order and we have to follow it but I told (Haqqani) to engage some other lawyer,” she said.