Pakistan's Top Court Convicts Prime Minister

By Siddiqui, Taha | The Christian Science Monitor, April 26, 2012 | Go to article overview

Pakistan's Top Court Convicts Prime Minister


Siddiqui, Taha, The Christian Science Monitor


Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani's conviction is triggering turmoil in a government already struggling with major economic and security challenges amid tense US relations.

Pakistan's Supreme Court convicted Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani of contempt today, but sentenced him to detention until the rise of the court, which took only a few moments.

The process of convicting the prime minister began in 2009 with a Supreme Court decision ordering the government to ask authorities in Switzerland to reopen a 1990s corruption probe against President Asif Ali Zardari. Mr. Gilani refused, citing presidential immunity, and in January the court ordered contempt proceedings against him. Both belong to the Pakistan People's Party (PPP), which has been the ruling party in Pakistan since 2008.

The conviction and sentence were largely symbolic. Though they were considered a compromise to leave the government in tact, they left the prime minister weakened and facing calls to step down amid his refusal. The trial highlighted political uncertainty and tension between the government and the judiciary branch that have all but crippled an administration struggling to tackle economic, energy, and security challenges.

The uncertainty weakens Gilani's civilian government, complicating US efforts to support a stable civilian rule in a country with a long history of overthrows and interference by the military. It comes as US envoy Marc Grossman visited Islamabad for two days, his first visit since Pakistan blocked NATO supply lines to Afghanistan in November as bilateral relations seemed to hit rock bottom.

"Who will follow court orders if the government doesn't?" says Mehmood-ul-Hassan, president of the Karachi Bar Association. "What kind of a message are we sending internationally - that we have a convicted PM holding office?"

Now the government has to decide whether the conviction is enough to dismiss Gilani as prime minister.

"The PM has lost moral authority to hold office, even though if they say he has legal authority, that is just a matter of interpretation," says Ahmer Bilal Sufi, a constitutional expert. "These leaders are the role models for the public, and there will be a lot of discontent in the public if court orders are not followed," he says adding that the authority of the judiciary was also harmed because of the attitude of the government. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Pakistan's Top Court Convicts Prime Minister
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.