–Justice (r) Mulk assumes office, says holding ‘transparent elections’ his foremost priority
–CJP Nisar says polls won’t be delay no matter what
LAHORE: Amid calls for delay in general elections, interim Prime Minister Justice (r) Nasirul Mulk and Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar allayed the concerns expressed by various political parties, reiterating that the polls will be held on schedule—July 25.
Speaking to reporters in Islamabad after his oath taking ceremony, the caretaker PM said holding of “transparent elections” is his top and foremost priority.
“The caretaker setup will ensure to work in accordance with mandate given to it,” said the retired judge, asserting that there will be no delay in polls. He said that the “size of federal cabinet would be small” while adding that he had started work right away after the administration of the oath.
Earlier in the day, retired Justice Mulk took oath as the seventh caretaker prime minister at the President House.
President Mamnoon Hussain administered the oath to the caretaker prime minister at a ceremony. Following the ceremony, Justice Mulk was presented a guard of honour by the armed forces.
Justice (r) Nasirul Mulk was unanimously nominated as Caretaker Prime Minister by the government and opposition.
Top government officials and dignitaries attended the ceremony, including former PM Abbasi, the chiefs of staff, Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani, and others.
The oath-taking ceremony was held hours after the third consecutive National Assembly managed to complete its five-year constitutional term. However, it is only the second National Assembly under the civilian rule which completed its tenure, as the NA which came into existence in 2002 had operated under military dictator Gen Pervez Musharraf.
CJP BACKS TIMELY POLLS:
Separately, CJP Nisar also assured that there will be no delay in the upcoming general elections.
Hearing a petition against the Election Commission of Pakistan’s (ECP) code of conduct for the upcoming polls at the apex court’s Lahore Registry, the CJP asserted, “[the] general elections will be held on July 25 and we will not allow any delay no matter what.”
During the hearing, the petitioner stated that the ECP’s code of conduct issued for 2018 general elections is against “agreed upon rules and regulations”. “The court should declare the code of conduct null and void,” the plea stated.
Issuing a notice on the matter, the court summoned a reply from the chief election commissioner to be submitted by June 4. The ECP on Thursday released the code of conduct for election observers, polling staff and security officials who will be deployed during the upcoming general elections scheduled for July 25.