Pakistani Church hails supreme court ruling against Imran Khan
The Supreme Court also orders a vote on a no-confidence motion against the Prime Minister
Pakistani police arrive early in the morning outside the parliament building ahead of a no-confidence vote against Imran Khan’s government in Islamabad on April 9. (Photo: AFP)
Religious leaders and human rights activists hailed the Supreme Court’s ruling declaring unconstitutional Prime Minister Imran Khan’s decision to dissolve Pakistan’s parliament to avoid a vote of no confidence.
“The verdict restored our faith in the rule of law, a democratic state and voting for good representatives. The last three years have been the worst regime in terms of human development, minority legislation and economic growth,” said Kashif Aslam, national coordinator of the project at the National Commission for Justice and Peace of the Catholic Bishops.
Aslam had demanded a quick decision from the country’s top court ever since Khan’s ruling party on April 3 blocked a no-confidence vote he was widely expected to lose. His government then dissolved parliament and called a snap election.
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“Prime Minister Imran Khan is trying to take us back to the stone age using the religion card. His ego is responsible for the whole political and constitutional crisis. Even the ruling minority lawmakers preferred their party to the community,” Aslam told UCA News.
Opposition members have appealed to the Supreme Court to decide the legality of the blocked vote. On April 7, the Supreme Court ruled that Prime Minister Khan’s decision to dissolve parliament was illegal and ordered the restoration of the house.
The Supreme Court also ordered the President of the National Assembly to convene the session on April 9 to allow the vote on the no-confidence motion against the Prime Minister.
“Happy that the supremacy of the constitution has been confirmed. A victory for democracy in Pakistan! Christian Solidarity Worldwide UK Deputy Team Leader for South Asia Cecil Chaudhry said in a Facebook post.
The Pakistan Human Rights Commission also welcomed the court’s judgment.
“It was essential that the court not compromise on any aspect of respect and compliance with the constitution. This decision will have a long-term effect in terms of strengthening constitutional democracy,” the commission said in a statement.
“Likewise, we urge all political actors, and in particular the restored federal government, to renew their commitment to democratic values and to put the needs and rights of ordinary citizens ahead of narrow political interests.”
There had been high hopes for Khan after his election in 2018 on the promise of sweeping away decades of entrenched corruption and cronyism, but he struggled to maintain support with soaring inflation, a weak rupee and crushing debt. .
Nuclear-armed Pakistan has been wracked by political crises for much of its 75-year existence, and no prime minister has ever seen a full term.
“Unfortunately, the courts have not been transparent in our troubled history. Generally speaking, anyone is for sale in our country. People are not sincere with their homeland. The recent verdict established the authority of the Supreme Court. Instead of following his own terms, Prime Minister Khan should have accepted the available options,” said Fr. Nasir William, Director of the Social Communications Commission of the Islamabad-Rawalpindi Diocese.