Nawaz Sharif Stands Disqualified from Public Office for Life, Says Pakistan SC in Historic Verdict
Pakistan’s Supreme Court dashed former prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s hopes of returning to power on Friday, ruling that the disqualification handed to him last year in the Panama Papers Case was for life.
File photo of Pakistan's former prime minister Nawaz Sharif. (Photo: Reuters)
A report in Dawn.com, said the disqualification under Article 62 (1)(f) of Pakistan’s constitution is for life. Article 62(1)(f), which sets the precondition for a member of Pakistan’s parliament to be ‘sadiq’ and ‘ameen’ (honest and righteous), was the one under which Sharif was disqualified as PM last year.
The verdict was issued unanimously by all five judges of the bench while hearing a case related to determination of time duration for disqualification of a lawmaker under the Constitution.
Sharif, a three-time prime minister, was ousted by the judiciary in July 2017 over corruption charges which he is currently facing in Pakistani courts.
Friday's ruling addressed an ambiguity over Sharif's disqualification and whether he was barred from office for life or a specific period.
Sharif has denied any wrongdoing and has blamed "hidden hands" for his dismissal.
Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) leader Jahangir Tareen was disqualified on December 15 last year by a separate bench of the apex court under the same provision.
Following the verdict, both Sharif and Tareen have become ineligible to ever hold public office.
Reacting on the judgment, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said that he believes people of Pakistan should make such decisions about the fate of politicians.
I am of the belief that it’s the people of Pakistan who should make such decisions about the fate of politicians. Unfortunately it is PTI & PMLN themselves who have forced the judicialization of our politics. Naehal Nawaz & Tareen must now face the consequences of their actions.— BilawalBhuttoZardari (@BBhuttoZardari) April 13, 2018
It has been stated in the decision read out by Justice Umar Ata Bandial that the disqualification of any member of parliament or a public servant under Article 62 in the future will be permanent.
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