SC moved to bar govt from amending rules to settle ECP issue - Pakistan Today

SC moved to bar govt from amending rules to settle ECP issue

ISLAMABAD: A petition was filed with the Supreme Court (SC) on Wednesday against an anticipated move by the government to bring in a presidential ordinance to amend rules of the parliamentary panel that will finalise nominations for the posts of the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) and two members of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP).

The petition maintains that the government wants to appoint CEC and two members from Sindh and Balochistan of its choices by way of amending rules of the panel, which requires a two-thirds majority in the National Assembly.

“The government is trying to replace the word ‘two-thirds majority’ with ‘simple majority’, which would be a violation of Article 213 and 218 of the Constitution,” it said.

The federal government, ECP secretary, and the Law Ministry were made respondents in the petition.

A day earlier, the Islamabad High Court (IHC) granted 15 more days to the federal government for the appointment of the ECP members.

During the hearing, the court was told that several members of the parliamentary committee were unable to attend the meeting on Monday due to dense fog. The rules formed by the previous committee are not suitable in the current scenario, a legal adviser said.

The IHC chief justice said the court can only expect that the opposition leaders and Prime Minister Imran Khan jointly select names for the posts. Only parliamentary committee can change the rules, he asserted.

The legal adviser said that parliament has the ability to handle the situation if it commits any mistake over which, the CJ said that the National Assembly should not do any mistake as it is representative of 22 crore people.

Subsequently, the hearing was adjourned till January 15.

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