Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani faces the prospect of being disqualified as an MP for five years after Pakistan’s Supreme Court ruled today that he ‘wilfully,deliberately and persistently’ defied the highest court and brought the judiciary into ‘ridicule’.
A seven-judge bench headed by Justice Nasir-ul-Mulk issued a 77-page detailed order regarding the conviction of the premier for refusing to act on directives to revive cases of alleged money laundering against President Asif Ali Zardari in Switzerland.
Earlier,the same bench had issued a short order when it convicted Gilani of contempt and gave him a symbolic sentence of less than a minute on April 26.
Even in the short order,the bench had hinted that Gilani faced possible disqualification.
The apex court referred to an earlier order it had issued on January 10,which had said that under provisions of Articles 63(1) and 113 of the Constitution,a conviction of contempt “may entail a disqualification from being elected or chosen as,and from being,a member of Majlis-e-Shoora (parliament) or a Provincial Assembly for at least a period of five years”.
The seven-judge bench enumerated reasons for the conviction of the 56-year-old premier and analysed the evidence that was presented during his trial in the detailed order.
The detailed order said “the highest executive functionary of the state of Pakistan” had “wilfully,deliberately and persistently defied a clear direction of the highest court of the country”.
Such “clear and persistent defiance at such a high level constitutes contempt which is substantially detrimental to the administration of justice” and brings the judiciary into ridicule,it said.