UPPER DIR: A renowned lawyer and candidate of Jamiat Ulema Islam (JUI-F) for PF-92 Upper Dir-II, Ahmad Ali yousafzai Advocate, announced Friday to withdraw his nomination papers in support of lawyers’ movement for restoration of pre-November 3 judiciary. He said he would use all his energy for giving impetus to the ongoing struggle of lawyers for the rule of law in the country.
Though the President is going to lift the emergency and repeal PCO today (Saturday), the lawyers renewed their call for the boycott of the January 8 elections to put the screw on Musharraf to revert to pre-Nov 3 judicial set up. Lawyers had started taking back their nomination papers across the country to boycott the elections as a protest against the sacking of Supreme Court and high courts’ judges. Taking his cue from the president Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA), Aitzaz Hasan, the nominee of JUI-F for PF-92 Upper Dir-II and a practicing lawyer in Dir, Ahmad Ali Yousafzai Advocate, announced to withdraw his nomination papers in line with decision of (SCBA) and NWFP Bar Council.
“Sixty honourable judges of Supreme Court and high courts have offered sacrifices for the rule of law, and we are not going to leave them alone at this defining moment,” he said while talking to journalists at barroom. He maintained that taking part in the coming elections under the leadership of “an un-elected” president was a humiliation of 160 million people of the country. He recalled that the present regime subjected judges, lawyers, journalists and members of civil society to excessive use of force. “Honest and dauntless judges were sacked, all basic rights suspended and media muzzled by a dictator for his own personal interests. There is no rule of law, but rule of a dictator,” he said, adding the handpicked judiciary could not provide justice to people. “In case of rigging, there is no forum to get justice from,” Ahmad Ali said, referring to the judges who took oath under PCO. In view of this situation, he added, he would take his nomination papers back to strengthen lawyers’ movement for rule of law.
He thanked the party’s provincial leadership for reposing confidence in him and allotting a provincial assembly ticket to him and said that he would continue to be an active worker of the party under the leadership of Maulana Fazlur Rehman. “I am the part and parcel of the party and it is very important for me the cause for rule of law is supreme,” he said. Local lawyers’ leaders said they would also persuade other members of the legal fraternity, who had filed nomination papers, to withdraw their papers for furthering the cause of rule of law. It may be mentioned that Upper Dir lawyer community has been playing active role in organising protest demonstrations in accordance with programme of lawyers for the restoration of deposed judges.