Pak constitutional experts differ on SC’’s role in Musharraf’’s impeachment

August 9th, 2008 - 11:48 am ICT by ANI  

Pervez Musharraf

Islamabad, Aug.9 (ANI): While an announcement has been made by Pakistan’’s ruling coalition to go ahead with the impeachment of President Pervez Musharraf, top constitutional experts in the country have differed on what the country’’s Supreme Court can or cannot do with regard to the motion. But most of them said that the apex court has no jurisdiction in the matter.

The Daily Times quoted S M Zafar, a lawyer, as saying that the Supreme Court would not interfere in the parliament’’s affairs in usual circumstances but could stay an impeachment motion against the president.

He further went on to say that the apex court could take up the issue if allegations in the charge sheet against the president warrant its attention. It could issue an interim injunction to stay the impeachment process ahead of the motion, he said, adding that the president could then plea the charge sheet against him is unjustified.

Justice (retired) Fakhruddin G Ebrahim, however, said it was the right of the parliament to impeach the president under Article 47 of the Constitution, and that the Supreme Court did not have the constitutional authority to interfere with the impeachment process.

Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) Secretary Muhammad Amin Javed said the Supreme Court could neither stay the process of impeachment nor entertain any challenge to the motion, because “it is being moved by the representatives of the 160 million people of Pakistan”.

Veteran lawyer Latif Khosa said the Supreme Court could not interfere with the impeachment motion.

Former SCBA president Hamid Khan said the parliament was supreme and the Supreme Court had no mandate or jurisdiction to interfere with its affairs. He alleged that the incumbent Supreme Court judges were “handpicked by Musharraf”, and could therefore do anything.

Justice (retired) Tariq Mehmood said the Constitution did not authorize the Supreme Court to entertain a petition against the president’’s impeachment. (ANI)

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