ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court panel hearing the suo motu case involving the National Assembly speaker’s controversial verdict – which dismissed the no-confidence motion citing Article 5 – is the same one that heard the presidential reference seeking an interpretation of Article 63-A earlier this year.
The hearing will resume today at 1 p.m.
On March 21, Pakistan’s Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial convened a five-member panel to hear the presidential referral, which advocated for parliamentarians’ lifetime disqualification for disobeying party directives.
Justice Ijazul Ahsan, Justice Mazhar Alam Miankhel, Justice Munib Akhtar, and Justice Jamal Khan Mandokhail make up the bench, which is led by Justice Bandial.
Suo Motu on the vote of no confidence
The deputy speaker, Qasim Suri, denied the no-confidence motion against Prime Minister Imran Khan on Sunday, citing suspicions that a foreign power was seeking regime change in Pakistan. The opposition claimed that the speaker had done an unconstitutional conduct and had taken the matter to the Supreme Court and staged large protests.
Following the rejection of the no-confidence vote against Imran Khan and the president’s subsequent dissolution of the National Assembly, the Supreme Court forbade all state institutions from pursuing any “extra-constitutional” actions.
The Supreme Court ordered the AGP to investigate the validity of the deputy speaker’s decision. During the hearing, Chief Justice Bandial stated that, given the current political circumstances, “public order must be maintained” and “no state functionary shall adopt any extra-constitutional measure.”
During the hearing, the court stated that it would consider the speaker’s decision in light of the constitutional articles, and that the President’s and PM’s actions would be subject to the court’s final decision.