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Pakistan Supreme Court Rules Ousted Leader Nawaz Sharif Cannot Lead His Party

22 February 2018

A three-member Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Nisar gave the order against the Elections Act 2017 passed by the parliament.

The approval of Electoral Reforms Bill 2017 had paved way for sacked premier Nawaz Sharif to become president of the PML-N.

The Supreme Court of Pakistan on Wednesday disqualified former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to be chief of the country's ruling party, saying that a person who is not eligible to hold a public office can not head a party.

The Chief Justice said that as a effect, Senate tickets issued by Sharif were also declared void, throwing the fate of March 3 Senate elections in doubt.

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State Minister for Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb said the party had expected a similar verdict from the apex court. However, decisions taken by Sharif will be nullified, including tickets issued by him for the Senate elections.

"Whoever wants to be in the party will have to accept Nawaz as final authority", he said. She said since the Panama Papers verdict, "all decisions have been taking to target a single personality" - Nawaz Sharif.

PPP leader Qamar Zaman Kaira said the SC decision should not be taken as against Sharif or linked with his disqualification earlier.

Barrister Murtaza Wahab said that the ECP may issue a new schedule for Senate elections or the ruling party may issue new certificates to the party candidates.

The top court disqualified Sharif from office last July for concealing financial assets.

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Mr Sharif and his supporters have repeatedly denied allegations of corruption, suggesting the three-time prime minister is the victim of a conspiracy driven by Pakistan's powerful military establishment.

Several journalists and political analysts also took to expressing their opinion on Twitter following the verdict.

"With today's verdict, [already] disqualified Nawaz Sharif was once again handed the certificate of disqualification", PTI Spokesman Fawad Chaudhry said in a statement.

Political-scientist Rasul Bakhsh Rais said it is not fair for anyone in the world to lead a country "while stealing money from the people".

They also content that the law is against the spirit of the Constitution. "He is a popular leader, who has massive public support with him".

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Pakistan Supreme Court Rules Ousted Leader Nawaz Sharif Cannot Lead His Party