PM Shehbaz Sharif paid for UNGA visit from his own pocket. He stayed in The Plaza, where nightly rates begin at $900.
There were rumours that he might stay at The Plaza in New York when he left on his first journey to represent the nation at the UNGA.
A single room at the hotel costs about $900 per night to rent (which roughly translates to Rs221,000).
This spurred an online discussion over why the prime minister was squandering money by booking a five-star hotel for himself and his entourage, particularly given the state of the Pakistani economy and the devastation caused by the recent massive floods.
PM Shehbaz’s point man for digital media, Muhammad Abubakar Umer, has now said that the prime minister covered his own travel costs while in New York.
The prime minister took a commercial flight to New York and PM Shehbaz Sharif paid for UNGA from his own pocket, SAMAA TV correspondent Usman Khan reported.
وزیراعظم شہباز شریف کےاقوام متحدہ کے دورہ کےدوران ان کی رہائش کے حوالےسے جھوٹی خبریں پھیلائی گئیں۔حقائق کچھ یوں ہیں؛#UNGA کے دوران دنیا بھر سے شریک حکمرانوں کی حفاظت کی ذمہ داری امریکہ کی Secret Serviceکے پاس تھی اور تمام حکمران ان کی منظور شدہ قیام گاہ پر ہی ٹھہر سکتے تھے
— Abubakar Umer (@abubakarumer) September 25, 2022
Talking about the prime minister’s decision to stay at The Plaza, Umer said that during the UNGA, it was the US secret service’s duty to ensure the security of the dignitaries visiting. The guests could only stay at the hotels for which the US secret service had given clearance.
Shehbaz Sharif, during his tenure as Punjab chief minister from 2008-2018, always paid for his own expenses during foreign visits, he claimed.