The fate of over 200 Pakistani lawmakers hangs in the balance as the Election Commission decides on their future on Monday, following their failure to submit declarations affirming they do not hold dual nationality.
The ECP has called a session on Nov 12 to decide on the issue of legislators who had not submitted their declarations by Friday – the commission’s deadline for filing the affidavits, Additional Secretary Mohammad Afzal Khan told.
Chief Election Commission Fakhruddin G Ebrahim said the ECP is firm on acting against dual national legislators following the Supreme Court’s clear orders.
Pakistan’s apex court, disqualifying 11 legislators on Sept 20 for holding dual nationalities, had directed the ECP to obtain fresh declarations on oath from all legislators to examine their cases individually.
A senior ECP official said the commission had made it clear that those failing to submit fresh declarations would be presumed to be possessing dual nationality, which would ultimately lead to their disqualification.
The official had earlier said that as many as 331 lawmakers, including the prime minister and some of his cabinet colleagues, had not submitted their affidavits by Wednesday. He said that some lawmakers who had proceeded on Haj might get some more time to submit fresh declarations.
Another source in the Election Commission said Friday that up to 223 lawmakers were yet to file their declarations.
According to the source, the lawmakers include 81 from the National Assembly, 31 from the Senate, 76 from Sindh Assembly, 27 from Punjab Assembly, 7 from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly, and one legislator from the Balochistan Assembly.