30 July, 2014 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter | Mobile





mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 06/19/2012
PAKISTAN
Supreme Court rules Gilani cannot be premier
The decision could plunge the country in chaos. Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry did not simply impose a symbolic sentence as in April; instead, he threw the PM out of parliament. The cabinet and PPP leaders meet in an emergency meeting. Behind the executive-judiciary confrontation lurks the military.

Islamabad (AsiaNews/Agencies) - In an unprecedented ruling, Pakistan's Supreme Court could throw Pakistan into a political and institutional turmoil. Pakistan's top court has in fact disqualified Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani from holding office, two months after convicting him of contempt of court for failing to pursue corruption charges against President Asif Ali Zardari. It is unclear whether the prime minister and the ruling Pakistan People's party (PPP) will fight to keep Gilani in office.

The Supreme Court ruled that Gilani has "ceased to be the prime minister of Pakistan". In fact, "Since no appeal was filed" against the 26 April conviction, "Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani stands disqualified as a member of the Majlis-e-Shoora [parliament]," Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry said. "He has also ceased to be the prime minister of Pakistan [. . .] the Office of the Prime Minister stands vacant."

Many however find the court's decision illegitimate because the prime minister is not accountable for his actions to the judges.

Currently, the cabinet is holding an emergency meeting in the presence of Prime Minister Gilani, President Zardari, top cabinet ministers and PPP officials.

The ruling party still has the numbers in the National Assembly to pick a successor and stay in power until the end of the current legislature next year.

However, political uncertainty hangs over an atmosphere of open confrontation between branches of government, especially between the executive and the judiciary, behind which some see the country's real power broker, the military.

The charges against President Zardari date back to the 1990s when his late wife Benazir Bhutto was prime minister. He was accused of using Swiss bank accounts to launder bribe money. Prime Minister Gilani refused to reopen the case, saying that to do so would be unconstitutional.

President Zardari has always insisted the charges against him were politically motivated.

Two months ago, the judges sentenced the prime minister to a symbolic jail term of a few minutes in the courtroom, even though he could have received up to six months and be banned from public office.

Gilani is the first Pakistani prime minister to be convicted by a court of law.

The confrontation between levels of government could overshadow the country's priorities: economic development, corruption, Islamic fundamentalism and education.

The court's decision puts Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry back at the centre of Pakistan's turbulent political stage.

A few years ago, Chaudhry had a major run-in with former President Pervez Musharraf. Since then he has worked behind the scenes in to gain more power and prestige.


e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
06/20/2012 PAKISTAN
Bishop of Islamabad: after the Gilani verdict, "unity" to overcome the political crisis
by Jibran Khan
02/13/2012 PAKISTAN
Supreme Court adjourns trial of Prime Minister Gilani for contempt
04/26/2012 PAKISTAN
Supreme Court convicts Prime Minister Gilani to symbolic sentence
03/16/2009 PAKISTAN
The government reinstalls Iftikhar Chaudhry, the opposition calls off the “long march”
by Qaiser Felix
01/16/2012 PAKISTAN
Power struggle in Islamabad as military and courts threaten the government

Editor's choices
VATICAN
"Stop! I am asking you with all my heart. Stop!" says pope as he speaks out on the Middle East, Iraq and Ukraine He mentions children, victims of war, "from whom we take away the hope for a decent life," urging the parties to address "every diatribe with the tenacity of dialogue and negotiation and the power of reconciliation". As tomorrow marks 100 years since the outbreak of the First World War, "a day of mourning," we should learn the lessons of history. The Gospel makes us know the true Jesus, the living Jesus, who speaks to the heart and is a life changer as he was for Saint Francis of Assisi. "The joy of finding the treasure of the Kingdom of God comes through, can be seen. Christians cannot hide their faith."
IRAQ - VATICAN
Saddened by "the timidity of the civilised world," Baghdad patriarch's heart bleeding "for the innocent in Iraq, Syria and Gaza" "Forget us not!" says Mar Louis Sako in a message to Card Barbarin on the occasion of the march of solidarity with Iraqi Christians, held today in Lyon.
VATICAN
Pope: I am with the persecuted Christians of Mosul and the Middle East "May the God of peace inspire in all a genuine desire for dialogue and reconciliation. Violence is never defeated with violence. Violence is defeated with peace." At the Sunday Angelus Francis comments on the parable of the wheat and the weeds. God is "patient" He knows "the same weeds in the end, may become good wheat". But "at the time of the harvest, that is, of judgment, the reapers will execute the order of the master separating the weeds to be burned".

Dossier
by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
by Lazzarotto Angelo S.
pp. 528
by Bernardo Cervellera
pp. 240
Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.