Senate passes Amended Election Bill 2017
The clause 203 of the Elections Reforms Bill, 2017 was passed by the Senate on Friday, after being cleared by the National Assembly, thus paving the way for ousted premier Nawaz Sharif to become the chief of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) again.
Pakistan Peoples Party’s Aitzaz Ahsan had suggested an amendment in clause 203 stating that someone who was no longer a member of the National Assembly could not become the chief of a party either.
At Friday’s session, a vote was held on the proposed amendment with 38 lawmakers approving the bill as it is and 37 rejecting it. The government managed to get the bill passed by one vote.
The bill, which was approved by the NA in August, gives every citizen the right to be part of a political party or create one, except those in government service.
After the passage of the bill, PML-N leader Mushahidullah said with the approval of clause 203, Nawaz could become the party chief again.
“In fact, it can be considered that he has already become the party chief,” he added.
The Election Commission of Pakistan had de-notified Nawaz as member of the National Assembly in line with the Supreme Court’s July 28 verdict. Nawaz was also rendered ineligible to act as his party’s president in the wake of the verdict.