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Zardari issues ordinance to protect Gilani’s decisions

Publication Date : 25-06-2012

 

Pakistan's President Asif Zardari yesterday issued an ordinance to give constitutional protection to the decisions made from April 26 to June 19 by former prime minister Yousuf Raza Gilani, recently ousted by the Supreme Court, DawnNews reported. According to the ordinance, these decisions cannot be challenged in any court. The ordinance also stated that any agreements made by Gilani with other countries during the aforementioned time would also be given constitutional protection, the TV channel reported.

The Supreme Court on June 19 disqualified Gilani as the prime minister in its short order of the National Assembly Speaker ruling case.

The move was the culmination of a stand-off between the judiciary and the government, and forced the main ruling Pakistan People’s Party to hastily elect Raja Pervez Ashraf as the new premier on Friday in a bid to end the crisis.

Yesterdays ordinance aims to prevent actions taken and orders passed by Gilani between April 26 — when he was convicted of contempt – and his dismissal last week from being challenged in any Pakistani court, according to the text of the ordinance.

When it ousted Gilani, the Supreme Court said he was no longer prime minister from the date of his contempt conviction, raising the prospect of any actions he took as premier in the past two months being challenged.

“Any actions taken, orders passed, directions issued, advice given to president or appointments made by Yousuf Raza Gilani, shall be deemed to have been validly done,” the ordinance said.

“The provisions of the ordinance shall have, and shall be deemed to always have had, effect accordingly.”

It said that “no suit, prosecution or any other legal proceedings including a petition shall lie in any court or forum including the Supreme Court” against any order made or functions performed by the former premier.

The Pakistan People’s Party government, dogged by corruption allegations, has been locked in a stand-off with the judiciary for years.

Zardari was forced to ditch his first choice to replace Gilani, Makhdoom Shahabuddin, after an anti-narcotics court ordered his arrest over a drugs scandal.

 

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