ISLAMABAD: The ruling party on Tuesday re-elected ousted premier Nawaz Sharif as its leader, who said he was “back with full force”, a day after using its parliamentary majority to amend a law to allow him to re-take the job.
Jafar Iqbal, who headed a five-member election body, said Nawazx had been elected party president unopposed by the Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz’s (PML-N) central executive committee.
The Supreme Court, as part of its July 28 verdict in the Panama Papers case had disqualified the former PM for not declaring a source of income. He was also forced to step down as president of the PML-N, though he kept control of the party and installed Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, a loyalist, as prime minister.
His re-election brings him back into the political fold, he said, contradicting those who thought he would no longer be relevant.
“There have been attempts again and again to exit me, but you will always keep giving me an entry again and again,” Nawaz told party workers after his election. “I congratulate that you’re bringing Nawaz Sharif back with full force.”
“Legal grounds should not be exploited to insult the mandate of the people,” he said, adding “Pakistan will not forgive us if we do not make efforts for changing the system.”
“The right to rule in the country is the right of the people and constant breach into this right must stop,” asserted the deposed PM.
Aiming at those allegedly responsible for his ouster, Nawaz said the breach of Constitution by four dictators was not only overlooked but praised. Even after violating the Constitution, “they remained ‘Sadiq and Amin‘,” he added.
“When the unconstitutional actions of the dictators couldn’t be substantiated with logic, then a doctrine of necessity was invented.”
He added it was saddening that “we have not learned anything from the fall of Dhaka to put our own house in order.”
No one came forward to contest Nawaz, who will lead the party for four years.
“Nawaz Sharif is the symbol of economic development in Pakistan,” Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal said in his address to the party members.
Parliament had amended a law on Monday to enable Nawaz to re-take the PML-N leadership. Opposition lawmakers tore up paper copies of the Election Bill 2017, passed by the Senate last week, that allowed him to become the party president again.
The vote was more of a formality as PML-N has a vast majority.
Nawaz has appeared before an anti-corruption court and is expected to be indicted next week, along with three of his children.
The veteran leader denies any wrongdoing and has alleged there was a conspiracy against him.
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Source: Tribune News
Original Post: Ousted PM Nawaz Sharif ‘back with full force’ as party chief