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SC rejects plea against Sikandar Sultan Raja s appointment as CEC

ISLAMABAD: 15, SEPTEMBER, 2021: Supreme Court (SC) on Wednesday has rejected the appeal against the appointment of Sikandar Sultan Raja as Chief Election Commissioner (CEC).

According to sources, a two-member bench headed by acting Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Umar Ata Bandial heard the case.

During the proceedings, the apex court upheld objections raised by the registrar office on the petition of Advocate Ali Azeem Afridi.

Justice Bandial in his remarks said that a constitutional amendment cannot be challenged and asked the applicant to prove which serving judges are working in the ECP. 

The Supreme Court said that the present Chief Election Commissioner is a retired civil servant. There is currently no serving judge in the Election Commission.

The petitioner had challenged Article 27 of the 22nd Amendment. No concrete grounds against appointment of Chief Election Commissioner. The appointment of members, including the Election Commissioner, is based on merit.

During the session of Standing Committee on Parliamentary Affairs, the minister Azam Swati criticized the commission for making fun of the Parliament. In a protest against the statement of the minister, the ECP officials walked out of the meeting. 

CEC Sikandar Sultan Raja had chaired a meeting over allegations leveled by the federal ministers. The participants mulled over the discussions which were held during the sessions in Standing Committee on Parliamentary Affairs and President House.

The ECP members expressed indignation on federal ministers for accusing the commission of taking bribes. The allegations are baseless and unacceptable as the ECP is a constitutional department, they stated.

Last week, Advocate Ali Azeem Afridi moved the petition against the appointment of the current CEC, Sikander Sultan Raja. He had approached the Supreme Court (SC) after the Peshawar High Court (PHC) dismissed his similar petition last year in September.

It is pertinent to mention here that, on January 27, 2020, Sikandar Sultan Raja was sworn in as the chief election commissioner (CEC). (04)

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