- Shehbaz calls for transparent inquiry into President Alvi’s conduct.
- Says PMs, other office bearers required by law to sign summaries, bills.
- Ex-PM wonders why President Alvi stayed quiet for such a long time.
LONDON: Former prime minister Shehbaz Sharif has called for an official inquiry into the conduct of President Arif Alvi after his tweet plunged Pakistan into a constitutional crisis.
Speaking to the media, Shehbaz said that a transparent inquiry should be held into President Alvi’s conduct “to determine facts through a transparent probe”.
Shehbaz is in London for 10 days for his medical treatment and to meet his elder brother Nawaz Sharif.
The Pakistan Muslim Legue-Nawaz (PML-N) president also said the inquiry should make it clear whether the staff of the president committed a mistake or Alvi lied. He explained that prime ministers and other office bearers are required by law to sign summaries and bills.
“As a premier, one is required to always put down signatures, the president is required to do the same by putting down his signature,” he added.
Shehbaz went on to say that the state business is not conducted through oral or informal means. He said the president either “rejects or approves a bill, he signs it, there is nothing oral”.
He said President Alvi holds the highest constitutional office of the state and an inquiry is needed to determine the truth.
Shehbaz wondered why President Alvi stayed quiet for such a long time. He asked the president to explain why he failed to do his job and only claimed to remember things at a certain time.
He also questioned why President Alvi had not followed the rules and if he had returned the bills he should have made that clear.
Hours after his removal’s request as secretary to the president, Waqar Ahmed issued a statement saying that President Alvi neither assented to the Official Secrets (Amendment) Bill, 2023, and the Pakistan Army (Amendment) Bill, 2023 nor gave a written decision for returning them to parliament for reconsideration.
In a letter sent to the president, Ahmed stated that the Pakistan Army (Amendment) Bill was received on August 2 and sent to the president on August 3.
President Alvi, he added, had the 10-day time to advise on the bill till August 11.
“The Honourable President neither assented to the Bill nor gave a written decision for returning the Bill for reconsideration by the Parliament. The said file has not been returned to the Office of Secretary to date i.e. 21.08-2023,” the letter stated.
Meanwhile, the Official Secrets (Amendment) Bill was received on August 8 and was moved to the president’s office on August 9.
“It was clearly stated in the Note that the Prime Minister’s advice was received on 08-08-2023 and time of 10 days will be completed on 17.08.2023 (Thursday),” the letter also stated.
However, the letter added that the president neither assented to the bill nor gave a written decision for returning the bill for reconsideration by parliament.