All over the world, where there is democracy, elected constitutional officeholders enjoy clearly defined powers to enable them to perform their role within the parameters laid down in their constitutions or laws.However nobody is ever conferred with such powers, which allows them to obstruct rule of law, or protect criminals required for investigation.It is unfortunate that despite assurances to arrest the killers of journalist Wali Babar, who have been implicated by FIT,no serious attempt has been made to apprehend killers located within Pakistan and an individual from South Africa. Reports appearing in the media allege thatorders to this effect have been issued from the PM House to prevent anyprogress for political considerations.Similar hurdles have been placed for political considerations to protect criminals involved in plundering state funds and assets. Clearlyno such powersexist, where any constitutional office holder is allowed to obstruct judicial process, investigations or giving any such verbal orders to facilitatecriminals wanted by law. Mere involvement of any constitutional officeholder in such unlawful excesses debars them from holding such an office and make them party to such crimes. This is the reason whynations where democracy exists require those eager to hold any public officeto be evaluated and judged on a more conservative scale for morals, ethics, financial transparency and conflict of interest. GULL ZAMAN, Peshawar, December 10.