Imran to continue as prime minister till the appointment of a caretaker premier

Imran Khan will continue to serve as the prime minister of Pakistan till the appointment of a caretaker premier under Article 224-A(4) of the Constitution, according to a notification issued by President Dr Arif Alvi’s office.

Article 224(A) deals with the procedure of the appointment of the caretaker prime minister in case the leader of the house and leader of the opposition do not agree on the name of a caretaker prime minister, while 224(A) says:

“The incumbent Prime Minister and the incumbent Chief Minister shall continue to hold office till the appointment of the caretaker Prime Minister and the care-taker Chief Minister, as the case may be.”

Earlier in the day, the Cabinet Secretariat had issued a notification stating that Imran Khan had “ceased to hold the office of the prime minister of Pakistan with immediate effect”.

However, under Article 94 of the Constitution, the president “may ask the Prime Minister to continue to hold office until his successor enters upon the office of Prime Minister”.

This development came after the National Assembly Deputy Speaker Qasim Suri disallowed the no-trust vote against PM Imran by ruling it to be part of a “foreign conspiracy” and in violation of Article 5 of the Constitution, which demands loyalty to the state.

As the opposition reeled in the face of the government’s move, PM Imran appeared on television moments later to announce that he had advised the president to dissolve the NA and called on the country’s citizens to prepare for fresh elections.

Shortly after, the president dissolved the lower house of Parliament under Article 58 of the Constitution, which says:

“The president shall dissolve the National Assembly if so advised by the prime minister; and the National Assembly shall, unless sooner dissolved, stand dissolved at the expiration of forty-eight hours after the prime minister has so advised.”