Breaking News

SC Judge Asserts Only Amendment Can Reverse Lifetime Ban

SC Judge Asserts Only Amendment Can Reverse Lifetime Ban

Justice Yahya Afridi of the Supreme Court has articulated that the life ban imposed under Article 62(1)(f) of the Constitution in the 2018 Samiullah Baloch case cannot be negated merely by the introduction of Section 232 in the Election Act 2017 through ordinary legislation. Instead, he asserts that a constitutional amendment is requisite to overturn the ban.


In an additional note issued on Monday, Justice Afridi elucidated his dissent from the majority judgment of January 8, 2024, which nullified the court’s 2018 ruling by a majority of six to one. The 2018 Samiullah Baloch case had barred individuals disqualified under Article 62(1)(f) from participating in parliamentary proceedings due to their perceived lack of ‘honesty and righteousness’.

Also Read: Justice Naeem Sworn In as Supreme Court Judge

Justice Afridi underscores that ordinary legislation cannot annul the judgment of a constitutional court regarding the interpretation of Article 62(1)(f). He contends that the period of disqualification stipulated by the apex court in the Samiullah Baloch case takes precedence over the five-year disqualification period outlined in the Elections Act 2017.

Article 62(1)(f) notably lacks a specified time frame for disqualification, in contrast to the amended Section 232(2) of the Elections Act, which imposes a five-year duration for disqualification. According to Justice Afridi, any attempt to impose such a time limit on Article 62(1)(f) necessitates a constitutional amendment rather than ordinary legislation.

Moreover, Justice Afridi emphasizes the importance of respecting the original jurisdiction of Article 184(3) of the Constitution, which grants the Supreme Court authority to intervene in matters of public importance concerning the enforcement of fundamental rights. He stresses that the court should exercise judicial caution, particularly in political matters, to ensure fair legal recourse and avoid rendering individuals disqualified without proper redress.

Additionally, Justice Afridi underscores the principle of stare decisis, which requires judges to carefully consider overturning precedent and maintain consistency in legal interpretation. He warns against rendering Article 62(1)(f) redundant, as it would undermine fundamental principles of constitutional interpretation.

In conclusion, Justice Afridi asserts that the lack of qualification/disqualification criteria under Article 62(1)(f) is both live and self-executory. Declaring it non-executory would render the provision meaningless and contravene established principles of constitutional interpretation.