Willing to accept responsibility as CEC, says Ebrahim
ISLAMABAD: Retired judge Justice Fakhruddin G. Ebrahim, who was chosen by a parliamentary committee for the key Chief Election Commissioner’s position, has said that he would accept the responsibility if given the opportunity.
Speaking to DawnNews on Monday, Ebrahim said that he had not yet been informed of his selection by the committee, but would accept the responsibility if it is handed to him.
Ebrahim’s appointment ends a deadlock over the longstanding issue, created after the opposition PML-N rejected all three names proposed by former Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani. The PML-N had also refused to hold further consultations with Gilani, saying the party would not hold talks with a convicted person.
Gilani was dismissed as prime minister after he was convicted of contempt by the Supreme Court for refusing to write a letter to Swiss authorities to reopen graft cases against President Asif Ali Zardari.
Under the 18th Amendment, the tenure of the CEC has been increased to five years from three and the procedure for the appointment has been changed. The CEC was earlier appointed by the president, but under Article 213 of the Constitution, the prime minister in consultation with the opposition leader in the National Assembly is required to forward three names to the parliamentary committee for confirmation of one of them.
Earlier today, the Parliamentary Committee on Appointment of the Chief Election Commissioner unanimously approved Justice Ebrahim’s name for appointment as the CEC.
The committee, which met at the Parliament House with Syed Khursheed Ahmad Shah in the chair, unanimously confirmed Ebrahim’s name for CEC after considering the nominations forwarded by the Prime Minister and the Leader of Opposition in the National Assembly.
Speaking to media representatives, Khursheed Shah, head of the 12-member bipartisan parliamentary committee, said “any fears regarding rigging in elections” should no longer hold merit, adding that, ninety per cent of the work pertaining to implementation of the Charter of Democracy (CoD) had been completed.
Ebrahim’s name had been proposed by the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) in May.
The PML-N had proposed the names of Justice Shakirullah Jan, Justice (retd) Fakharuddin G. Ebrahim and Justice (retd) Nasir Aslam Zahid for the post. The government had proposed the names of Justice (retd) Munir A. Sheikh, Justice (retd) Amirul Mulk Mengal and Justice (retd) Zahid Qurban Alvi.