End of the political road for Nawaz Sharif
Pakistan's erstwhile Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif, has been dismissed from his post by a court and banned from taking office for life. He has no official position now and cannot run for elections due to be held end of this year when the present rule of his party, the Muslim League, will come to a constitutional end.
The ban comes following allegations against him and all his family members of laundering state funds and transferring the ill-gotten money abroad. The luxury apartments owned by the Sharif family in London are said to have been bought with this unaccounted money.
Nawaz Sharif’s Pakistan Muslim League party has now named him “leader for life” while his brother, Shahbaz, the chief minister of Punjab province, has been formally appointed party chairman.
Sharif faced specific charges of failing to comply with two articles of the Pakistani Constitution, No. 62 and 63. These articles required complete honesty while serving in senior governmental posts. These include the post of prime minister, the president, or even taking part in any elections. Another judicial decision was made to remove him from his post as leader of his political party on the same charges.
Experts on Pakistani issues believe that there is no constitutional room for Sharif to maneuver and return to power or participate in the next elections. Others believe that Sharif will amend the constitution by an act of Parliament before the end of its remaining term. However, most feel this may be difficult as a result of the major challenges he faces, including rifts within his party.
Sharif is currently leading a media campaign against the judicial decisions. According to analysts, Sharif may try to lead a popular revolution if he cannot participate in the next elections. In case he fails in this, and is unable to overturn the legal verdicts against him, he is bound to go into oblivion. This fate is what most analysts expect to fall on Sharif.