ISLAMABAD – The 12-member parliamentary committee on appointment of chief election commissioner (CEC) once again failed to reach consensus on the new CEC at the Parliament House on Friday. However, it was decided that deliberations would continue on Monday.
Sources aware of the deliberations of the meeting, informed TheNation that all the five members belonging to Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) had made it loud and clear that they would not approve any of the names proposed by Prime Minister Gilani.
Realising the stubborn attitude of the PML-N members of the committee, chairman of the parliamentary body, Federal Minister for Religious Affairs Syed Khurshid Ahmad Shah made a smart move and withdrew the name of Justice(r) Zahid Qurban Alvi on the plea that he (Alvi) had expressed his unavailability for the position due to his personal engagement and said he would request the prime minister to recommend another name to be considered for the slot.
Sources aware of the developments taking place on this front, said as the PPP could not appoint CEC without support of the main opposition party, PML-N, so it withdrew the name of Justice Alvi as a tactical move and now PPP would engage in consultation with Opposition for bringing in some other consensus candidate for the slot which would be acceptable to all the stakeholders. Sources in PPP said in the party meetings on the issue members had also expressed serious reservations over the three names proposed by Leader of the Opposition Ch Nisar Ali Khan to the committee.
Parliamentary sources said that now both parties would engage into fresh round of consultations over a consensus candidate and the same would be proposed by the prime minister to leader of the opposition after dropping some name from the already presented lists by them.
PPP has already withdrawn the name of Justice (r) Zahid Qurban Alvi and if consensus will be evolved on some name, the same will be proposed by the prime minister.
Khurshid Shah, seeing the deadlock-like situation in the committee meeting, adjourned the meeting to meet again on Monday when they would again deliberate upon the names proposed by the prime minister and leader of opposition.
Khurshid informed the committee members that they had to decide on the matter within 14 days of receipt of names from both leader of the house and leader of the opposition.
In the given situation the 14-day time will be going to complete on June 7 and the committee has to decide on the subject by that time.
Though the rules of business of the committee are silent in case of a deadlock and failure of either side to secure two-third majority in the 12-member committee within 14 days of receipt of the names from both leader of the house and leader of the opposition in National Assembly. But, the constitutional experts said that in case of deadlock the matter would automatically move to the Chief Justice of Pakistan or someone could move a petition in the apex court to decide on the matter to fill the constitutional slot.