A Collaboration with the University of Pittsburgh

Pakistan Supreme Court bans Nawaz Sharif from politics for life

[JURIST] The Supreme Court on Pakistan on Friday ruled [judgment, PDF] that a person would be disqualified for life if the court found that they were not "honest" or "truthful" at any point in their career, effectively preventing former prime minister Nawaz Sharif from running for parliament for life.

The Constitution of Pakistan says "a person shall not be qualified to be elected or chosen as a member of Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament) unless ... he is sagacious, righteous, non-profligate, honest and ameen, there being no declaration to the contrary by a court of law." The Constitution of Pakistan itself does not specify how long the period of time a person could be disqualified for it the court finds them unfit for the position. The Supreme Court of Pakistan decided that an incapacity to meet the above qualifications imposes a permanent bar to being a part of parliament that will stay in effect "so long as the declaratory judgment supporting the conclusion of one of the delinquent kinds of conduct under Article 62(1)(f) of the Constitution remains in effect." This was a unanimous decision made by the court, which decided that people who were untrustworthy or dishonest should not have the ability to hold a political office.

In 2017 Sharif was indicted on corruption charges by his opposing party and was forced to step down by the Supreme Court of Pakistan [JURIST reports]. This ruling will disqualify him from ever holding office again due to the interpretation of the constitutional provision.

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.