Decision to ban dual nationals from being part of parliament

ISLAMABAD: The federal government has decided to ban dual nationals from joining the parliament, under which Article 63-1C of the Constitution will be amended. Citizens will have to renounce dual citizenship after winning an election. According to sources, the federal government has decided to bring a new constitutional amendment under which it has decided to amend the constitution to allow people with dual citizenship to contest elections.

Decision to ban dual nationals from being part of parliament

Sources revealed that the Federal Cabinet has approved the amendment to Article 63-1C of the Constitution. The draft amendment will also be passed by Parliament in a few days. After the amendment, the dual citizen person will decide to give up either his seat or foreign citizenship after winning the election.

According to the proposed amendment, it would not be necessary to renounce dual citizenship in order to contest elections.

It is worth mentioning here that a re-application has been filed in the Supreme Court to declare the appointment of Special Assistants with dual citizenship of the Prime Minister and an adviser to the Prime Minister as illegal and unconstitutional and to withdraw the notification of appointment to the required posts. The petition is an appeal against the dismissal application announced by  Islamabad High Court on 30th July. Appeal was filed by Advocate Malik Munsif Awan through his lawyer Muhammad Ikram Chaudhry who had challenged the appointments in the High Court. Special Assistant to the Prime Minister Nadeem Babar, Advisor to the Prime Minister on Trade Abdul Razzaq Dawood, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister for Power Division Shehzad Qasim, Special Assistant to Overseas Pakistan Syed Zulfiqar Abbas Bukhari (Zulfi Bukhari), Assistant to the Prime Minister. Special Assistant for Political Affairs Shahbaz Gul, Special Assistant for National Security Moeed Yousaf and Special Assistant for Parliamentary Liaison Nadeem Afzal Gondal.

In its judgment, the High Court had held that the Prime Minister is the chief executive of one of the most important pillars of the state and he has to perform a number of complex duties and he cannot play the role of the Prime Minister as defined under the Constitution alone. He said the prime minister should have the freedom to make appointments to assist officials or others to enable him to act as a state executive.

There is no restriction on the number of special assistants that the Prime Minister can appoint. The court had said that there is no restriction on the appointment of persons with dual citizenship, the only restriction provided in the Constitution is under Article 63 (1) (c) and it is limited to the disqualification of persons elected or elected to Parliament.

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