Court suspends Presidential appointment

ISLAMABAD: A bench of Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Monday suspended a presidential notification with regard to appointment of two members of the Election Commission of Pakistan.
A single bench of IHC comprising Chief Justice Athar Minallah heard a petition filed by Barrister Jahangir Khan Jadoon.
In the hearing, Justice Athar Minallah observed that the honour and prestige of the Parliament is supreme. The elected representatives in the parliament should decide the matter themselves.
The National Assembly Speaker and Senate Chairman in a joint endeavor should resolve the issue regarding appointment of two members of the ECP between the Treasury and Opposition Benches so that the provisions of the Constitution are upheld in letter and spirit.”
The election commission counsel sought a period of four weeks to resolve the matter.
Justice Athar Minallah directed the parties to settle the matter before December 07.
The court ruled that the presidential notification will remain suspended till the next hearing of the case on Dec 05.
The matter is lingering on since the retirement of ECP members Abdul Ghaffar Soomro from Sindh and retired Justice Shakeel Baloch from Balochistan in January. Under the law, their replacements were to be appointed within 45 days.
A consultation between the prime minister and the leader of the opposition in the National Assembly is required for the appointment of the ECP members.
After failure of Prime Minister Imran Khan and Leader of the Opposition Shahbaz Sharif to reach a consensus on the names, the matter was referred to a bi-partisan parliamentary committee, but it also failed to reach a consensus.
After which, the president exercising his powers appointed Khalid Mehmood Siddiqui from Sindh and Munir Ahmed Kakar from Balochistan on Aug 22 against two vacant positions.–Agencies