Nawaz Sharif likely to be re-elected as PML-N chief

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Nawaz Sharif likely to be re-elected as PML-N chief
Nawaz Sharif likely to be re-elected as PML-N chief

Islamabad : Ousted Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is expected to be re-elected as the president of his PML-N party next week under a new proposed law that will allow a disqualified lawmaker to take over reins of a political party.

Sharif had to step down as the head of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz after the apex court in its July 28 verdict disqualified him in the Panama Papers scandal.

The former premier's way to the presidency of his party was paved amid much uproar when during a September 22 session of Upper House of the Parliament (Senate), an amendment in the Election Bill 2017 was okayed by a single vote allowing a disqualified legislator to head a political party, Dawn online reported.

The new law will be presented in the Lower House on Monday for fresh votes on the Senate's amendments. It is expected to be passed easily as the ruling party has a majority in the house.

After getting clearance from both the houses, the bill would go to President Mamnoon Hussain's desk for endorsement, thus making it a law.

The PML-N will hold a general council meeting of the party on October 2 to amend the party constitution that also barred a disqualified person from holding any party office, said Minister for Climate Change Mushahidullah Khan.

Before the General Council, a meeting of PML-N central working committee (CWC) will be held. The second session would be held on October 3 to elect a new party president, added Khan. 

Khan, who is also PML-N's central information secretary, said that "all legal hurdles in the way of Sharif re-assuming his role as party chief would be removed by October 3".

The third-time ousted premier had to relinquish the top slot of the party after the Supreme Court disqualified him from office for concealing employment with a UAE-based firm owned by his younger son Hassan.

Khan added that in the meantime, Sharif would continue to appear before court(s) in the National Accountability Bureau references. A NAB court has summoned the former Prime Minister on October 2 to indict him in three graft cases.