ECP requests SC to name a judge as acting CEC
16 August, 2013
ISLAMABAD: After the acceptance of Chief Election Commissioner Fakhruddin G Ibrahim's resignation by President Asif Ali Zardari, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has requested the Supreme Court (SC) to nominate a judge as acting CEC.
An ECP official told that the commission had received a letter from the Law Ministry that the president had accepted the resignation of Fakhruddin G Ibrahim.
After receiving the letter, he added, the ECP had also written a letter to the SC, requesting it to nominate a judge as acting CEC.
Senior lawyers say that since the office of CEC is vacant, therefore, the August 22 by-elections would not be valid until the appointment of a regular or acting CEC. In case of appointment of a regular CEC, the government has to request for the constitution of a parliamentary committee.
Meanwhile, SC Registrar Dr Faqir Hussain has confirmed that the SC received a request on Thursday from the ECP regarding nomination of acting CEC, which had been forwarded to Chief Justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, who is hearing cases at Quetta Branch Registry.
The SC registrar also said that under the constitution, the CJP had the authority to nominate any SC's judge as acting CEC.
It is learnt that ECP Secretary Ishtiaq Ahmad Khan was also ready to tender his resignation but he changed his decision on the request of commission's other members.
A senior official of the ECP has already admitted that the ECP has continuously remained under serious stress from the Supreme Court in several matters in the last two years.
Chaudhry Faisal Hussain, a lawyer, said that after the "undue interferences" by the superior judiciary, Chief Election Commissioner Fakharuddin G Ebrahaim had tendered his resignation.
"It is an admitted fact that ECP members could not show their courage to challenge the court's interference in the commission's affairs because political parties have appointed weak, retired judges as members of the commission," he added.