The Supreme Court of Pakistan has announced the verdict it reserved on Election Act 2017, declaring former prime minister Nawaz Sharif ineligible to head his own party, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), The Express Tribune reported.
The three-judge bench, headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar has also declared all acts including issuance of senate tickets by Nawaz Sharif as illegal.
A senior law officer told The Express Tribune that in view of Wednesday’s judgment, Senate candidates can contest election independently as party electoral symbols cannot be allotted to them.
The verdict said that anyone who is unable to fulfil the requirements of Articles 62 and 63 of the constitution cannot hold any public office including the post of a party head.
The short order is consisted of nine paragraphs and its reasons will be issued later.
Earlier Wednesday, the apex court had reserved its judgement on the Election Act 2017, which paved the way for deposed Sharif to become party head of the PML-N prior to his disqualification.
Major political parties – including the Pakistan Peoples Party and the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf – had challenged the Elections Reforms Act 2017, which paved the way for Sharif to become party head again after his disqualification from holding political office under Article 62 of the constitution.
The apex court on January 1 declared as maintainable the petitions challenging the act, a part of which has paved the way for the deposed premier Nawaz Sharif to head his party after his disqualification on July 28, 2017, in the Panama Papers case.
The bench was considering consequences of the anti-judiciary remarks by Sharif, whose party portfolio is under scrutiny in this case in view of the Panama judgment.
During hearings of the case, it has been the bench’s consistent view that abusing the judiciary means disloyalty with the state in view of Article 5 of the Constitution. The judges are also considering whether the person, who is ridiculing the judiciary, can work as party head.
“We have to draw the lines so that a looter could not become party head. God forbid if a crook becomes a party head,” Nisar wondered on February 15.