New Pakistan parliament could reinstate ousted judges, depose Musharraf

New Pakistan parliament could reinstate ousted judges, depose Musharraf

[JURIST] Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf's Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) [party website] conceded defeat Tuesday in parliamentary elections as unofficial results tentatively gave the opposition parties of assassinated former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto [BBC obituary; JURIST news archive] and former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif [JURIST news archive] approximately 60 percent of 272 seats in the National Assembly of Pakistan [official website]. Musharraf's PML-Q retained approximately 12 percent of the seats. The new parliament, which could impeach Musharraf with a two-thirds majority, could also reinstate former Supreme Court justices who were were ousted on November 3 [JURIST report] after Musharraf declared emergency rule. The reinstated Supreme Court could then issue its anticipated ruling [JURIST report] on whether Musharraf had been eligible to run for re-election as Pakistan's president while still army chief.

The parliamentary elections were held Monday after a month-long postponement [JURIST report] following the assassination of Bhutto at a rally in Rawalpindi. Last Monday, the Pakistan Bar Council (PBC) [profession website] launched a new nationwide lawyers' boycott of the courts [JURIST report] to protest Musharraf's ouster of Pakistani Supreme Court Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry [JURIST news archive] and to demand his reinstatement and that of other ousted superior court judges. AP has more.