LONDON: Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry said on Sunday the judiciary and parliament had given protection to martial law in the past.
Addressing a ceremony in London, he said the judiciary could intervene if a deal was not transparent. “The weakest democracy is better than martial law. The parties making deals on the Pakistan Steel Mills were non-existent. The situation would have been different, had the steps of dictators not been endorsed,” Justice Iftikhar said.
He said the chances of imposition of martial law had been blocked once and for all. “I cannot imagine speaking beyond the Constitution, the solution to every problem existed in the Constitution,” he added.
Online adds: Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry arrived in London to receive the International Jurists Award 2012 for his contributions to justice administration. The award will be given at the inaugural session of the two-day International Jurists Conference.
The International Council of Jurists (ICJ) has organised the conference to cover a wide range of topics from judicial reforms to the role of jurists in nuclear disarmament. During the inaugural session, Chief Justice of the United Kingdom Rt Hon Lord Phillips will confer the ICJ Award 2012 on CJ Chaudhry.
Chief Justice Chaudhry already shares the honour of being one of the six vice-presidents of the council. The two presidents include Dr Adish C Aggarwala, Sr Advocate, and Justice Awn S Al-Khasawneh, the Prime Minister of Jordan.
Other than CJ Chaudhry, five vice presidents of the council include Justice ABM Muzzamel Hossain, Chief Justice of Bangladesh; Sir James R Mancham, KBE-PhD Founding President of the Republic of Seychelles; Rt Hon’ble Lord Navnit Dholakia House of Lords, London (UK); Sir Justice Gavin Lightman retired judge, High Court of England; and Prof Dr Holger Matt, Chairman, European Criminal Bar Association.
The Council has two general secretaries, namely, Justice Augustino Ramadhani ex-Chief Justice of Tanzania, and Justice Ahmad Faiz Hussain, Chief Justice of the Maldives.Secretaries of the council include Justice Lovemore G Munlo, Chief Justice of Malawi; Justice Alnashir Visram, Judge of the Court of Appeal of Kenya; Justice James M Farley ex-Judge, Supreme Court of Ontario (Canada); Pham Quoc Anh, MP President, Vietnam Lawyers Association; and Joseph Bodurin Daudu, SAN President, Nigerian Bars Association.
Immediately after landing here on Sunday afternoon, the chief justice of Pakistan attended a reception, hosted by UK-based Pakistani lawyers and jurists. According to Pakistani state-media, the chief justice left Pakistan for the London Conference on Sunday morning. The most senior judge of the apex court Justice Shakirullah Jan will take oath as acting Chief Justice of Pakistan on Monday morning.