PPP opposes amending Articles 62 and 63 at this time

ISLAMABAD:  Leader of Opposition in the National Assembly Khursheed Shah has said that Peoples Party opposes amending Articles 62 and 63 of the constitution at this point in time. The government wants to make the amendments to protect ousted Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif which Peoples Party would not support in any way. Talking to media outside the parliament here Khursheed further said that making amendments for saving an individual not only puts a question mark about it but it could also be challenged in the court. We had talked about making amendments to Articles 62 and 63 it was not due to any such issue but we only wanted to restore the constitution made by Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and to expunge the sections added by Zia-ul-Haq, he added.

Continuing Khursheed said that PPP supported amending Articles 62 and 63 because the things were different then. We are not in favor of it presently because it is aimed at protecting an individual and PPP would strongly oppose it. Constitutional amendments would be made when the time comes but the sitting government should respect court judgments, he added. The government wants to make these amendments to save Nawaz Sharif but the PMLN had opposed abolishing Articles 62 and 63 to trap Asif Ali Zardari and now it’s being trapped in the net that it had woven for us, Khursheed added.

Khursheed supported former minister Information Pervez Rasheed’s demand for publishing Dawn Leaks report and also thanked China for strongly rebutting US President Donald Trump statement. It may be mentioned that the government made the decision to table a bill to make amendments in Articles 62 and 63 to lessen the period for disqualification under the two articles.

Speaking at the National Assembly session Law Minister Zahid Hamid had said that there is no mentioning of the period of disqualification in Article 62. We feel that the disqualification period should be less than four years. He had also said that he would take the matter to the Constitutional Reforms Committee.

Earlier the National Assembly had approved the Elections Reforms Bill 2017 which comprised over 40 amendments proposed by the government as well as the opposition. PTI had walked out of the House in protest for non-acceptance of four points that it had presented.