The Election Commission of Pakistan has at long last taken the welcome step of barring dual nationality holders from contesting parliamentary elections. The ban applies to serving parliamentarians as well. This long-delayed step will help identify those among public representatives with dual nationality, as well as the parties to which they belong. Hopefully, it will also help identify who has been honest and who has not, with regards to their nationalities, while serving the people of Pakistan. Pakistan has had its share of ‘imported Prime Ministers’ as well as other foreign nationals in the garb of leaders who played their part in pushing the country to its present state of chaos and anarchy. Pakistani nationals should be served by Pakistani national; preferably ones whose assets all lie in Pakistan as well. After all, if you have nothing to lose from your own misgovernance, why should those who live here and hold green passports have to exclusively suffer? Corruption and the loot and plunder fo official resources goes unchecked, with the wave of a blue or red passport, and off they go, leaving the sinking ship to sink on its own. With the Election Commission’s step, a change in the political landscape of the country can be expected. And since the rule also applies to sitting MPs, it needs to be discovered how many of them have dual citizenships. According to one report in a national daily, the number of such MPs is close to 35. It should be investigated further and if found to be dual nationals, the law should be made applicable upon them. The ECP has been doing a good job, in the recent past, it cancelled 30 million bogus votes from the electoral rolls which were cast in the 2008 elections. Action is also underway against the fake degree holders in Parliament. Some have been disqualified while investigations are being made to scrutinise the degrees of the rest. However, as usual it is the federal government that has been resisting taking proceedings to their logical conclusion.

The interest of the nation should come first, which demands that the government let the ECP work impartially. Under no circumstances, should it be stopped from its laudatory steps of reforming Pakistan’s political culture. The country needs altruistic leadership and not leaders who have their planes ready to take them abroad once they are done sucking the country dry.