SC bars Nawaz from heading PML-N
The Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that a disqualified politician cannot lead a political party, paving the way for the removal of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif from chairing his embattled Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz.
It comes months after the ruling PML-N party passed a law allowing Nawaz to remain at the helm despite being removed from the premiership over graft allegations last July.
In the court order, Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar directed the Election Commission of Pakistan to remove Nawaz as party head from all relevant records.
Nawaz and his supporters have repeatedly denied allegations of corruption, suggesting the three-time prime minister is the victim of a conspiracy.
Nawaz was the 15th prime minister in Pakistan’s 70-year history – roughly half of it under military rule – to be ousted before completing a full term.
The news also comes months ahead of expected general elections, pitting the PML-N against the ascendant Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf led by former cricketer Imran Khan.
Despite the numerous court rulings targeting PML-N, the party has won a string of recent by-elections proving they will likely remain a political force in the next elections.