Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif steps down after supreme court find him guilty

Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif steps down after supreme court find him guiltyPakistan PM Nawaz Sharif steps down after supreme court find him guilty

Pakistan‘s supreme court on Friday found Nawaz Sharif guilty in the Panama Papers case and disqualified him from holding public office in a unanimous verdict. Sharif quit shortly after.

The PM stepped down from his post “despite reservations”, according to the PM house, reported Pakistani media.

The Pakistan supreme court also ordered a case be filed against Sharif.

Because he is head of the ruling party, Sharif will still be able to nominate his successor, reported Pakistani media.

Pakistan’s national assembly will vote on the candidate Sharif chooses, but it is likely that candidate will win, because Sharif’s party, the PML (N), has a strong majority.

The most likely candidates being touted are Sharif’s brother Shahbaz, Defence Minister Khawaja Asif, National Assembly Sardar Ayaz Sadiq, lawmaker Ahsan Iqbal and Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, speculated Pakistani media.

In its decision, the Pakistan supreme court specifically asked the president to “ensure a smooth transition for the democratic process.”

However, “Nawaz Sharif has been disqualified for life,” said Pakistan’s attorney general Ashtar Ausaf Ali.

This is the third time Sharif has been unable to complete his term in the chief executive’s office, said Dawn newspaper. It is unclear who will be appointed to take over as Pakistan’s prime minister. The next general elections are scheduled for 2018.

Also disqualified from his position is Pakistan’s finance Minister Ishaq Dar.

The verdict was pronounced by a five-judge bench.

The election commission of Pakistan (ECP) has been asked to denotify the prime minister so that the technicalities of implementing the supreme court order are fulfilled. The supreme court said the ECP needs to de-seat the PM for not disclosing his role in a Dubai-based company called Capital FZE, when he filed his nomination papers for the general elections.

A five-member bench of the apex court headed by Justice Asif Saeed Khan Khosa announced the decision and ordered a fresh investigation into the Sharif family’s wealth by the National Accountability Bureau, reported Nation.
Khosa is the same judge who commenced his dissenting note in the April 20 judgement with a quote from Mario Puzo’s novel The Godfather, reported Dawn newspaper. At that time, he declared Sharif ‘disqualified’ for not being honest to the nation.

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