ISLAMABAD – Supreme Court on Wednesday ordered all aspirants to submit an affidavit, comprising missing information in the electoral nominations papers, within three days.
A five-member bench, headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar, issued orders while hearing appeals filed by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) former speaker National Assembly Ayaz Sadiq against the Lahore High Court ruling ordering the revision of the nomination forms to be submitted by candidates for upcoming general elections.
Declaring the affidavit mandatory, the top court ordered the ECP to submit the format of the affidavit in the court within one hour, however, the nomination papers will remain unchanged.
CJP Nisar remarked why speaker is shying away while submitting information about himself, to which, Sadiq’s counsel replied his client was not reluctant to file information.
The chief justice remarked that public has right to get complete information about the candidates going to contest elections. He added that the ECP has authority to summon necessary details from the candidates.
The top judge said that all information was being demanded for justice, adding that the court will have the right to take action against the person who files misinformation in the affidavit.
On Friday, LHC Judge Ayesha A. Malik had ruled on Friday that the nomination forms do not include mandatory information and declarations required from lawmakers as per the Constitution and law, and ordered the ECP to ensure this information is included in the revised Form A ─ for election to the NA or Senate ─ and Form B ─ a statement of assets and liabilities.
The Supreme Court, however, on June 3 had suspended LHC’s ruling that nullified nomination forms of electoral candidates for the upcoming elections with Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar saying that elections will take place on July 25.
Following the orders, the ECP started collecting the nomination papers, in compliance with the approved format in the Election Act 2017. However, along with the nomination papers, each candidate also has to submit an affidavit for Article 62 and 63.
The affidavit includes details about holding foreign passports, dual nationality, and any criminal cases against the candidates.