IHC to hear Nawaz’s plea against Al-Azizia conviction on Oct 29

Registrar’s office also issued the same date for hearing of NAB appeal for extension of the former PM’s sentence

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Raja Basharat

Islamabad

The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Saturday fixed October 29 for the hearing of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s plea against his conviction in the Al-Azizia reference.

The registrar’s office also issued the same date – October 29 – for the hearing of National Accountability Bureau’s (NAB) appeal for an extension of the former prime minister’s sentence.

The appeals will be heard by an IHC bench comprising Justice Amir Farooq and Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani.

Regarding the judge Arshad Malik video scandal, the court has issued a notice to NAB – on Nawaz’s request – to submit a written response within two weeks.

Earlier this month, Nawaz Sharif challenged the Supreme Court’s decision in the case regarding a secretly filmed video of former accountability court judge Arshad Malik, who convicted the Pakistan Mulsim League – Nawaz (PML-N) supremo in the Al-Azizia corruption reference.

In August, a three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan Asif Saeed Khosa disposed of a set of identical petitions in the video case and ruled that the clip could only become evidence if its authenticity was established.

The SC also laid down strict standards for the admissibility of video and audio evidence before the court of law.

Ex-prime minister Nawaz Sharif had also challenged the Supreme Court’s decision in the case regarding a secretly filmed video of former accountability court judge Arshad Malik, who convicted the Pakistan Mulsim League – Nawaz (PML-N) supremo in the Al-Azizia corruption reference.

In August, a three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan Asif Saeed Khosa disposed of a set of identical petitions in the video case and ruled that the clip could only become evidence if its authenticity was established.

The SC also laid down strict standards for the admissibility of video/audio evidence before the court of law.

In his petition, Nawaz contends that the SC order “is without jurisdiction as it impinges upon the jurisdiction of the learned Appellate Court by pre-judging the issues that may or were/are likely to come before it for adjudication in the appellate jurisdiction under National Accountability Ordinance (NAO) 1999 in due course.”

The petition objects to the SC’s decision to pass a ruling without providing Nawaz an opportunity of a hearing, stating that it is violative of the constitutional guarantee that all citizens will be treated in accordance with the law.