“Misinformation” has led to mistrust of the woman who could become Pakistan’s first lady (Image 92 news HD)
Pakistani journalist Reham Khan has become infamous for “misinformation” regarding her academic qualifications (or in some cases lack of them). She also made allegations that ex husband Dr Ijaz Rehman had failed to support her and their children financially which was challenged after he provided the necessary paperwork in order to disprove her words and could obtain a solicitor’s letter of verification if required, see following link,
“More Reham Khan misinformation: Why I am challenging Bhabhi”
Dr Ijaz Rehman with wife Samavia, a doctor (Image Twitter)
Now there are concerns as to whether Reham may have allegedly claimed money she was not entitled to after she left the UK?
Dr Rehman explained to me,
“when she left the country in late 2012, I was informed by my relatives. I contacted the Police as I should have been consulted as I still had parental rights despite being prevented to see the children and not in touch with them. They said they are unable to take action but I contacted “Fathers for Justice”. They advised me to stop CSA (payments to Child Support Agency) to begin with.
When I got in touch with CSA they said as far as they know she is still in the country and to ring them after a couple of months. When I ran again they said they have not been able to contact her on the phone or by writing so if I wanted to stop payments I can!!!
I said I did not!
When I rang them about 3 months later they said she has provided a different address but still cannot contact her by phone and has also failed to provide details of schooling of my middle daughter Ridha. So they stopped Ridha payments themselves. They also told me that they get their information about residence of children or their parent from Child Benefit (CB) people so I should report them as she was still drawing the benefit!!!
When I rang CB they said they will only speak to the account holder and I contacted their fraud section. Which I did and obviously she was getting the benefits. They then investigated and stopped after a couple of months and so did CSA.
Yes I reported to the fraud section as I had CB number in old files!!! Sorry for being boring but these are the facts. Can’t give you exact dates but all calls are recorded!!!”
The child benefit was stopped after more than a year she was abroad and was done after the fraud unit was informed??”
According to this statement Reham was investigated and as a result allegedly had payments stopped though it is unlikely a case would proceed against her if warranted as any action would be difficult to enforce given she has left the UK and in a different country and jurisdiction.
The mystery over Reham Khan’s qualifications deepens. Doubts are still being cast with regard to Reham’s degree. She claims to have a Bachelor’s degree from the prestigious Jinnah College for women, University of Peshawar. Dr Ijaz Rehman said, “as far as her education is concerned, I can confirm she was not in Pakistan long enough to have done it (the degree) until December 2005, Whether she could have done it by correspondence or after divorce I can’t say but I never saw her studying?”
It is natural that questions should be asked and answered given how easy it is to acquire a fake degree certificate in Pakistan. Once a person has given some misinformation its difficult to know what to believe.
Reham has alleged she was the victim of domestic abuse going public in a TV interview about her private life though this was denied strongly by Dr Rehman. He continues to raise concerns regarding the suitability of his former wife’s appointment as an Ambassador for Street Children in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP). This is echoed by an increasing number of PTI supporters loyal to Khan.
Imran Khan defending Reham but questions remain unanswered
(Image Global Point Inn)
Imran Khan, Reham’s husband and Chairman of political party Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) recently tweeted,
“the constant false propaganda against Reham & our family life is appalling & against our traditional norms. Attacks against my wife must stop.”
It is unclear how Khan defines “traditional norms” or whether he was referring to Islam. which has a well defined code of conduct for males and females and does not exclude the elite.
A person going by the name of Ajuyal tweeted to Reham,
“when some one talk about ur past marriage u cry, at the same time ur commenting on (Donald) Trump prev marriages height of hypocrisy”
In KP where PTI came into power following the 2013 elections, the Express Tribune noted in 2014 that PTI “were a lethal blow to the venal aristocratic oligarchy; they brought a party to power that did not stand on aristocracy or family politics”. Are they still doing so or have they succumbed to the old practices of parties they criticise?
Although Reham’s Ambassador role in KP is a voluntary position, qualified and experienced social care workers feel they have been sidelined as the post appeared to be a “one horse race” denying locals the chance to take on this role. They query whether Reham was given the job based on the fact that she is Imran Khan’s wife. Questions have arisen as to whether Reham has any previous experience or qualifications working in a professional social care capacity with vulnerable children and did she go through a background check, important for such a sensitive assignment. As Janan Char Sau Bees tweeted,
“now if Reham Khan was given a an honorary position in Pakistan Weather Presenter association- it would make sense”
At least she has experience working in this field in a professional capacity.
In Pakistan “meritocracy” appears to be frequently sidelined with celebrities often without relevant qualifications being favoured over grassroots workers with years of dedication to their work. Elitism dominates ethical considerations. Qualified professionals explained to me that a person in Pakistan can be appointed simply for having the right connections and that its not what you know but rather who you know making an unequal playing field when applying for posts.
Reham was keen to share allegations against Dr Rehman with the media but both Reham and Khan have failed to respond to financial documents produced by Dr Rehman which detail payments to his ex wife. There is anger from some PTI supporters who state in private they have concerns over Reham’s role and effect on the party but risk being ostracised for airing this issue in public. Although Khan claims she has no role in the party denying family politics, it is unclear in what capacity Reham is attending events and taking on a social work role. As a journalist it would not be unusual to attend events to report but her role is increasing of a political nature with constant references to the policies and practices of PTI… surely a political role?
Reham appears to be splitting the party causing divided loyalties. In addition, some PTI supporters are angry that Jemima Goldsmith the former wife of Khan is now being accused of being behind a campaign to smear the name of Reham. Khan was quick to point out in a tweet,
“Jemima has always been supportive & the idea that she would ever be behind any kind of smear campaign ag Reham is absurd as I told The Mail”
Journalist Mubasher Lucman tweeted to Reham,
“if this is true then really sad and if not then you must sue this publication” but there is no sign of that happening, see also,
“Jemima Goldsmith accused of trying to ruin Imran Khan’s new marriage… new bride’s family claim socialite smear campaign”
Dr Rehman who is now remarried to a doctor, Samavia and has two children to add to the three he has with Reham remains concerned regarding the impact of all this on his family. He alleged,
“Reham is now in a country where she can be appointed an ambassador for street children when her husband does not accept his own daughter these are minor things!!! You can well imagine how she would have manipulated my children for saying the things they said against me at the time of divorce and since!
If she can fool the whole country small children are no problem for her! Now their ideas have converted into delusions!!! Unshakeable!!
She once said, “I can hook up any man in Hull in a few minutes”. I have a witnesses for that. I will leave her character at that for now! IK was a piece of cake for her as she is extremely devious woman!!! I can write a book on that subject!!”
Fans on Reham’s Facebook page that enjoy her “selfies” continue to admire her physical appearance, “Mashallah, looking great” said Zubair Amir Khan while others added, “so cute Reham khan” and “nice babe g”. However Su Mackenzie had a rather stronger message left for Reham saying,
“the gold standard should be that the divorced parents move heaven and earth to continue to have a cordial relationship for the sake of the children and for the sake of humanity. Parents need to ensure that kids don’t take sides and have opportunities to see both parents. It is good parenting to ensure that kids have regard for both parents. It will be a bit rich if a parent is not doing this, but is trying to carve out a political career as champion of street children.”
Reham has avoided answering key questions put to her so far. I was recently blocked after responding to a tweet she made by my querying why people in Pakistan are reluctant to address alleged state torture and extra-judicial killing in custody. She did not appear to appreciate the observation. Imran Khan’s party politics is increasingly under question. With PTI U turns, double standards and the role of his wife in the Party, let’s hope the Khan, Khan partnership doesn’t turn into another Heather Mills, Paul McCartney type drama or the Chairman may find he has bitten off more than he can chew!
Carol Anne Grayson is an independent writer/researcher on global health/human rights and is Executive Producer of the Oscar nominated, Incident in New Baghdad . She is a Registered Mental Nurse with a Masters in Gender Culture and Development. Carol was awarded the ESRC, Michael Young Prize for Research 2009, and the COTT ‘Action = Life’ Human Rights Award’ for “upholding truth and justice”. She is also a survivor of US “collateral damage”.