Ex-PM Sharif to file review petition against disqualification

PTI Chairman said in an interview that he wants to maintain democracy in Pakistan

He predicted that the PML-N under the leadership of Nawaz Sharif would emerge an absolute victor in the next general elections.

The ruling Pakistan Muslim League party agreed that Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif will succeed his brother and petroleum minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi will serve as the interim prime minister until Sharif is formally elected to office.

The publication of 11.5 million secret documents from Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca documenting the offshore dealings of numerous world's rich and powerful implicated three of Sharif's four children - daughter Maryam and sons Hasan and Hussein.

The Gulf News in an editorial, "Nawaz Sharif's ouster will strengthen democratic norms in Pakistan", noted: "It is very unfortunate for the people of Pakistan that none of their country's prime ministers has ever completed a five-year term". And it deals a serious blow to the legacy of a man who helped define the past generation of Pakistani politics.

According to details, existing Punjab CM will resign from his provincial assembly seat and contest in by elections for NA-120, from which Nawaz Sharif was disqualified by the apex court. Most tenures have been cut short by military coups. In a country marred by jihadism and abuse of Islamic laws, the Supreme Court's verdict could be used as a reference point to trigger Articles 62 and 63 against future leaders who do not conform to the narrowest brand of Islam.

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The PTI chief said this time his party would be prepared.

The high court ruled that Sharif had been dishonest to Parliament and to the judicial system and was no longer fit for office. And there is uncertainty over who will take his place till the next general elections, scheduled for 2018.

Now, he would play as big a part as any other individual or institution, in the inevitable instability that would ensue following his exit from the PM House. "Removing Sharif may have been the right thing to do, but it's no remedy for what ails Pakistan".

While Pakistan's calamitous past makes one of those possibilities border on delusional, with undemocratic elitist parties having been flagbearers of democracy for ages, even a self-purge among the civilian leadership would actually strengthen them to take on the more powerful state institutions - even if in the distant future.

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