National Assembly Speaker Dr Fehmida Mirza on Thursday ruled out an immediate decision on the disqualification of Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani, citing legal and procedural hurdles. However, she promised that everything would be done legally and strictly by the book.
While speaking to the media outside the Parliament House, Mirza said: “I have to consult and discuss the matter. The detailed order [of the Supreme Court] is also expected – which is the main thing.
I have to read the letter properly and see the legalities… everything will be done legally and according to the rules.”
The speaker added that everyone was in a hurry and expected her to pass a decision immediately which was not possible.
“The letter came to my secretariat… it goes through a procedure before it arrives at my desk,” she said assuring that everything will be done according to the constitution. She said the constitution provided her a 30-day period to proceed further regarding the disqualification, refusing to comment on the role of other institutions like the Election Commission in this regard.
Regarding the opposition’s protest against Gilani – building up pressure on him to step down – Mirza said that the opposition has not contacted her yet.
“Even in the Business Advisory meeting, no such thing was discussed… But I am ready to listen to them. I’m hoping they will come and talk to me about their issues.”
The Supreme Court declared the prime minister guilty for contempt of court for not writing a letter to Swiss authorities against President Asif Ali Zardari’s graft cases.
The apex court passed a short order earlier this month and transferred the authority to the speaker of National Assembly regarding his disqualification.
Following the order, several political parties of the country held protests and demanded Gilani to resign, calling him ineligible for the PM’s post.
(WITH ADDITIONAL INPUT FROM APP)
Published in The Express Tribune, May 4th, 2012.
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