SC seeks record of Rehman Malik's fresh election as senator
13 September, 2012
ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court on Wednesday sought the record of Interior Minister Rehman Malik's fresh election as senator, from the Election Commission of Pakistan on October 2.
The court also directed Malik's counsel to produce the nationality renunciation certificate issued by the UK Border Agency. A three-member bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry and comprising Justice Jawwad S Khawaja and Justice Khilji Arif Hussain is hearing the dual nationality case. It is to be noted that Malik was elected senator unopposed in July as no other contestant filed nomination papers against him.
During the hearing, the court, expressing concern over the conduct of the interior minister, asked his counsel, Anwar Mansoor, that they had been asking for the last eight months to produce the renunciation certificate issued by the UK Border Agency but they make excuses every time. Justice Jawwad said, "It is an important case," adding Malik's Senate membership was suspended in June as he had failed to produce his renunciation certificate. The CJP asked whether the minister had been elected senator again on the new renunciation certificate.
Mansoor informed the court that since May 29, Malik is not a British citizen. He said his client applied for renouncing his UK citizenship on April 25, 2008, but the UK Border Agency did not respond. The counsel told the court that in 2008 after Malik, through his solicitor in the UK, applied for renunciation of his British nationality, he genuinely believed his citizenship had been renounced. The CJP asked him not to invite trouble for his client as he had paid the fee for renunciation of the UK citizenship this year.
Justice Khilji asked when Malik believed his British nationality had been renunciated in 2008, why did he resign? Mansoor said Malik was being targeted by his political rivals, especially Nawaz Sharif, over his dual nationality, adding that the minister's case was taken up in the media. PML-N President Nawaz Sharif started a campaign against Malik after which the issue was discussed in parliament also. Petitioner Mehmood Naqvi said Malik had committed contempt of court.
The court had already suspended the membership of MNA Farahnaz Ispahani, Rehman Malik, PPP MNA Zahid Iqbal, PML-N's Muhammad Ikhlaq and Amna Buttar, and Sindh MPA Dr Ahmed Ali for holding dual nationalities.
The CJP directed to resend notices to the parliamentarians who were allegedly holding dual nationality but had not appeared before the court so far. Due to the shortage of time, the court could not take up contempt petitions against top government officials, including President Asif Zardari, and adjourned hearing until October 2.