Appointment of monitoring judge to oversee Sharifs’ NAB cases challenged
LAHORE: A petition challenging appointment of Supreme Court’s monitoring judge to supervise National Accountability Bureau (NAB) cases involving ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif, his children and finance minister Ishaq Dar, was filed in the Supreme Court on Monday, ARY News reported.
On August 06, Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar appointed Justice Ijazul Ahsan, who was part of the bench that handed down the disqualification verdict, to monitor the filing of NAB references and subsequent proceedings by accountability courts against the Sharif family in pursuance of the judgment.
Barrister Zafarullah Khan of Watan Party filed the petition at the apex court’s Lahore registry, questioning rationale behind the appointment of the monitoring judge.
In his petition, Khan submitted that the Supreme Court through a judgment dated July 28 disqualified Nawaz Sharif and ordered the filing of references against him and his children in the Panamagate case. It also ordered appointment of a monitoring judge to oversee the NAB cases against them, he added.
He contended that the right to fair trial as enshrined in the country’s constitution could not be ensured if trial is monitored by a judge of the apex court, for it would cause unnecessary pressure on trial court, undermining the principle of fair and independent trial.
It was responsibility of the court to ensure protection of the fundamental rights of citizens, he added while pleading with it to review its verdict with regard to the appointment of a monitoring judge.
Earlier on July 28, a five-judge bench unanimously disqualified former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and directed the NAB to file references against Sharif, his sons – Hassan and Hussain Nawaz – daughter Maryam Nawaz and son-in-law Captain (retd) Muhammad Safdar and Ishaq Dar.