SC to hear intra-court appeal against NAB amendments verdict on October 31

SC to hear intra-court appeal against NAB amendments verdict on October 31

Islamabad (Web Desk): The Supreme Court (SC) will take up for hearing an intra-court appeal by the federal government against the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) Amendment verdict on Tuesday (October 31).

According to the cause list, a five-member larger bench, headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Qazi Faez Isa, and comprising Justice Aminuddin Khan, Justice Jamal Khan Mandokhail, Justice Athar Minallah and Justice Syed Hasan Azhar Rizvi will hear the petition.

The top court has also issued notices to lawyers.

On September 15, a three-member larger bench of the top court, headed by then CJP Umer Ata Bandial and comprising Justice Ijaz Ul Ahsan and Justice Syed Mansoor Ali Shah the SC in a majority decision had allowed Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman and former premier Imran Khan's petition challenging amendments made to the National Accountability Ordinance (NAO) 1999 by the Pakistan Democratic Movement's (PDM) coalition government, and ordered the restoration of corruption cases against public office holders.

The top court declared nine out of 10 amendments to the National Accountability Ordinance (NAO) 1999 null and void.

The SC directed the NAB to return all case records to the relevant courts within seven days. 
The verdict also highlighted that the NAB amendments in question impacted the rights of the public as outlined in the Constitution.

Following the verdict, the anti-graft body reopened cases against political bigwigs including former prime ministers.

Later, the federal government filed an appeal under Section 5 of the Supreme Court (Practice and Procedure) Act 2023 against the top court's order.

The government in its appeal maintained the stance that by setting aside the law passed by parliament and making amendments to the NAB law, the top court had crossed its powers.

It was further contended that parliament was competent to legislate adding that it had enacted a law making amendments to the NAB law.

"If a legislation is repugnant to the fundamental rights of citizens, then the court can set it aside," the federal government contended but added that the amendments made to the NAB law did not affect the fundamental rights of citizens.