Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s political career seems to be all but over. In a significant ruling the Pakistan’s Supreme Court barred from running in elections for life, ruling on a petition asking the tribunal whether the disqualified premier could ever run again.
The court says that under the country’s constitution, no person once disqualified from office by the top court — as Sharif was — can hold public office again.
The verdict was issued unanimously by all five judges of the bench while hearing a petition related to the determination of time duration for disqualification of a lawmaker under the Constitution.
The court had grappled with Article 62(1)(f) which only stated that a lawmaker is disqualified under specified conditions but did not set out the duration of the disqualification.
Article 62, which sets the precondition for a member of parliament to be “sadiq and ameen” (honest and righteous), is the same provision under which Sharif was disqualified on July 28, 2017, in the Panama Papers case.
The court later also disqualified Sharif as head of the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz.
The historic ruling ended 68-year-old Sharif’s hopes for a political future.
Likewise, 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.