President of Pakistan

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President of Pakistan
صدر مملکت پاکستان
Flag of the President of Pakistan.svg
Mamnoon Hussain 2014.jpg
Incumbent
Mamnoon Hussain

since 9 September 2013
Style Mr. President
(informal)
Hon'ble President
(Within Pakistan)
His Excellency[1]
(Diplomatic, outside of Pakistan)
Residence Aiwan-e-Sadaṝ
Appointer Electoral College
Term length Five years, renewable once
Inaugural holder Iskandar Mirza
23 March 1956
Formation Constitution of Pakistan
23 March 1956
Website President of Pakistan
State emblem of Pakistan.svg
This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
Pakistan
Constitution

The President of Pakistan (Urdu: صدر مملکت پاکستان‎ — Ṣadr-e Mumlikat-e Pākistān, Urdu pronunciation: [ˌsəd̪ˈr-eː ˈmʊm.lɪˌkət̪-e pɑː.kɪs.t̪ɑːn]), the ceremonial head of state of Pakistan and a figurehead who represent the "unity of the Republic."[2] The President holds the legal title de jure and is a civilian commander-in-chief of the Pakistan Armed Forces as per the constitution of Pakistan.[3]

This position places its holder in leadership of the nation is kept informed by the Prime Minister of Pakistan on all matters of internal and foreign policy as well as on all legislative proposals.[4] Constitution of Pakistan vest the President the powers of the granting pardons, reprieves, and the control of the military; however, all appointments at higher commands of the military must be made by President on a "required and necessary" on consultation and approval from the Prime Minister.[5] In addition, the constitution prohibits the President from exercising the authority of running the government.[6]

The president is indirectly elected by he Parliament through the Electoral College for a five-year term. The Constitution required the President to must be a "Muslim of not less than forty-five years of age". The President resides in an estate in Islamabad known as Aiwan-e-Sadaṝ (lit. Presidency). The current President is Mamnoon Hussain who was elected on 9 September 2013.

The Presidency[edit]

Role of the president[edit]

The Ceremonial guard of honour at the Aiwan-e-sadr.

The official residence and principal workplace of the president is the Aiwan-e-Sadr— the presidential palace located in the northeast Islamabad. The presidency forms of the vital institutional organ of state and is part of the bicameral Parliament.[7]

Powers to exercise the authority are limited to the ceremonial figurehead and required to address the Parliament to give a direction national policies before being informed of its key decisions.[8][9][10]

In addition, the President is also a civil commander-in-chief of the military, with Chairman joint chiefs being its chief military adviser to maintain the control of the military.[11] After a thorough confirmation comes from the Prime Minister, the President confirms the judicial appointments at the country's court system.[12][13] In addition, the Constitution allowed the President to grant pardons, reprieves, and clemency in cases recommended to him by the executive and the judiciary.[14] The President himself has absolute constitutional immunity from criminal and civil proceedings, and no proceedings can be initiated or continued against him during the term of his office.[15]

There shall be a President of Pakistan who shall be the Head of State and shall represent the "unity of the Republic."

Article 41 in Chapter 1: The President of Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan, source[16]

From 2000 until 2009, the President was the chairman of the National Security Council and had authority control over the nuclear and strategic arsenals; however, the chairmanship and the powers transferred back to Prime Minister.[17] Furthermore, the presidential powers have significantly declined with Pakistan's system reversed to a parliamentary democratic republic.[18]

Eligibility and selection process[edit]

The Constitution of Pakistan sets the principle qualifications that the candidate must meet to be eligible to the office of the President.[19] A President must be:

Whenever the Aiwan-e-Sadr becomes vacant, the selection of president is due by the electoral college which consisted of both houses of Parliament (the Senate and National Assembly) and the four provincial assemblies.[20] The Chief Election Commissioner has to conduct elections to the office of the President in a special session.[21] Voting takes place in secrecy.[22]

Each elector casts a different number of votes.[22] The general principle is that the total number of votes cast by Members of Parliament equals the total number of votes cast by provincial legislators.[22] Also, legislators from larger states cast more votes than those from smaller provinces.[22]

The actual calculation for votes cast by a particular state is calculated by dividing the state's population by numbers of seat, which is divided again by the number of legislators from the State voting in the electoral college.[22] The constitution further states that election to the office of President will not be held earlier than sixty days and not later than thirty days before the expiration of the term of the President in office.[22]

Election and oath[edit]

The president is elected indirectly for a term of five years.[23] The incumbent President is eligible for re-election to that office, but cannot hold that office for more than two consecutive terms.[24] The President is required to make and subscribe in the presence of the Chief Justice—, an oath or affirmation that the president shall protect, preserve and defend the Constitution as follows:

I, ____________, do solemnly swear that I am a Muslim and believe in the Unity and Oneness of Almighty Allah, the Books of Allah, the Holy Qura'an being the last of them, the Prophethood of Muhammad (peace be upon him) as the last of the Prophets and that there can be no Prophet after him, the Day of Judgment, and all the requirements and teachings of the Holy Quran and Sunnah:

That I will bear true faith and allegiance to Pakistan:

That, as President of Pakistan, I will discharge my duties, and perform my functions, honestly, to the best of my ability, faithfully in accordance with the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan and the law, and always in the interest of the sovereignty, integrity, solidarity, well- being and prosperity of Pakistan:

That I will not allow my personal interest to influence my official conduct or my official decisions:

That I will preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan:

That, in all circumstances, I will do right to all manner of people, according to law, without fear or favour, affection or ill- will:

And that I will not directly or indirectly communicate or reveal to any person any matter which shall be brought under my consideration or shall become known to me as President of Pakistan, except as may be required for the due discharge of my duties as President.

Article 42 in Chapter 1: The President in Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan

Line of succession and removal[edit]

The Constitution discusses the possibility of an acting president.[25] Certain office-holders, however, are permitted to stand as Presidential candidates in case of vacancy as the constitution does not allow for a vice president:

The President may be removed before the expiry of the term through impeachment. The President can be removed for violation of the Constitution of Pakistan.[27]

The impeachment process may start in either of the two houses of the Parliament. The house initiates the process by leveling the charges against the President.[28] The charges are contained in a notice that has to be signed by at least by either Chairman or the Speaker National Assembly through a two-third majority.[28] The notice is sent up to the President and 14 days later, it is taken up for consideration.[29]

A resolution to impeach the President has to be passed by the two-third majority.[30] The Speaker National Assembly then summons the joint session not earlier than seven days.[31] The President has the right to defend oneself.[32]

If the resolution is passed by the two-third majority at the joint session declaring that the President is unfit to hold the office due to incapacity or is guilty of violating the Constitution or of gross misconduct; the President shall cease to hold office immediately on the passing of the resolution.[33]

No president has faced impeachment proceedings. However, the proceedings have been used in 2008 in an attempt to impeach former president Pervez Musharraf who tendered the resignation after the proceedings above were used.[34]

Post presidency[edit]

Chronological list of Presidents with tenure[edit]

  1. Iskander Mirza[35] (23 March 1956—27 October 1958)
  2. Ayub Khan[35] (27 October 1958—25 March 1969)
  3. Yahya Khan[35] (25 March 1969—20 December 1971)
  4. Zulfikar Ali Bhutto[35] (20 December 1971—13 August 1973)
  5. Fazal Ilahi Chaudhry[35] (14 August 1973—September 1978)
  6. Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq[35] (16 September 1978—17 August 1988)
  7. Ghulam Ishaq Khan[35] (17 August 1988—18 July 1993)
  8. Farooq Leghari[35] (14 November 1993—2 December 1997)

Political background[edit]

Presidential standard (1956–1967)

Early origins[edit]

From 1947 until 1956, the Governor-General had assumed the place of the presidency which pledged the allegiance to the Queen of Pakistan– the Queen Elizabeth II.[36] With the promulgation of first set of Constitution which declared independence from the ceremonial Monarchy and became Islamic republic in 1956, the Governor-General was replaced with the presidency.[36] The incumbent Governor-General, Iskander Ali Mirza, became Pakistan's first president who reportedly suspended the first set of Constitution in 1958.[37][38] Mirza appointed Army Commander-in-Chief General Ayub Khan as the first chief martial law administrator who dismissed Mirza in order to become the president.[39]

The second set of the Constitution introduced by President Ayub Khan turned the country into a presidential republic with the stipulation of President's direct elections.[40][41] Succumbed to internal and international pressure, the nationwide presidential election were held in 1965.[42] Facing Fatima Jinnah in the elections, Ayub Khan successfully campaigned for a second term but some have alleged that elections were rigged in favour of President Ayub Khan.[42]

Presidential standard (1974–1998)

Controversy regarding the U-2 incident (1960), privatization (1963), and war with India (1965), the presidency further weakened in a fierce left-wing opposition led by Zulfikar Ali Bhutto of PPP and nationalist Sheikh Mujibur Rahman with the support of demonstrators.[43] Suffering with paralysis and declining health, Ayub Khan handed over the presidency to army chief General Yahya Khan imposed the martial law and announced to hold nationwide elections in 1970.[43] Eventually, the general elections were held in 1970 which saw PPP in majority in Pakistan and Awami League in East Pakistan.[44]

Failing to reaching compromise between PPP and Awami League, President Yahya Khan invited Nurul Amin of Pakistan Muslim League to become the Prime Minister and appointed him as first Vice President.[45] Instigated violence against Pakistanis in East Pakistan invited President Yahya Khan to use force to maintained order in East Pakistan which further escalated Bengali resistance (1970).[45] Preemptive strikes against India led to another war (1971) as Pakistan witnessed the isolation of East Pakistan as Bangladesh.[46]

Politically isolated and devastated after the fall of East Pakistan, President Yahya Khan stepped down and ceded power to Zulfikar Ali Bhutto.[46] President Bhutto engaged in in a process leading to parliamentary democracy while reducing presidential powers.[46] In 1973, President Bhutto promulgated the comprehensive Constitution which reduced the presidential powers and introduced the presidency as figurehead.[46]

Past Interventions[edit]

The general elections held in 1977 resulted in an atmosphere of civil unrest instigated by the right-wing alliance, the Pakistan National Alliance.[47] The events leading to it resulted in military intervention by chief of army staff General Zia-ul-Haq and Chairman Joint Chiefs Admiral Mohammad Shariff.[48] Suspending the Constitution in 1977, General Zia-ul-Haq took over the presidency in 1978; Zia's presidency oversaw the modern growth of far-right ideas in the country.[48] Succumbed to domestic pressure to restore the Constitution, President Zia-ul-Haq held a referendum (1984) and called for general elections in 1985.[49] President Zia-ul-Haq appointed Mohammad Junejo as Prime Minister and assumed more powers through the constitutional amendment.[49] After dismissing Prime Minister Junejo, President Zia-ul-Haq announced to hold new general elections but President Zia died in a place crash in 1988.[49]

After the general elections held in 1988 witnessed the victory of PPP in 1988 and appointed Chairman Senate Ghulam Ishaq Khan to the presidency.[50] Conflict between Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto and President Ghulam Ishaq Khan arose in two areas regarding the issues of appointments.[50] President Ghulam Ishaq Khan repeatedly intervened in government matters and leveled charges against Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto; thus dismissing Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto in 1990.[50] After hold general elections in 1990, Nawaz Sharif brought up an ideologically conservative government and President Ghulam Ishaq Khan unsuccessfully tried dismissed Sharif. After a successful intervention by Supreme Court and Chairman Joint Chiefs General Shamim Allam, President Ghulam Ishaq Khan and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif tendered resignations in 1993.[50]

The new elections held in 1993, Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto established a strong government after appointing loyalist Farooq Leghari to the presidency.[51] However, the corruption charges and the controversial death of Murtaza Bhutto in 1996 resulted President Farooq Leghari to dismissed Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto.[51] In 1997, President Farooq Leghari could not overcome the heavy mandate bestowed the Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif by the public in 1997.[51] President Leghari unsuccessfully supported Chief Justice Sajjad Ali Shah— both of them resigned ending the conflict between Judiciary, the Executive, and the Parliament.[51] After appointing Rafiq Tarar, the Parliament successfully passed constitutional amendment to decisively limit the presidency.[52] After staging a controversial self coup in 1999, General Pervez Musharraf dismissed Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and President Rafiq Tarar in 2001 while assuming more powers to the presidency. In January 2004, the Electoral College elected Musharraf, as result of which he was, according to the Constitution, "deemed to be elected".[53]

President Musharraf repeated unconstitutional intervention resulted in a standoff with the Judiciary and declared state of emergency in 2007 after dismissing the senior justices of the Supreme Court. Although Musharraf was elected in 2007, the constitutional legality of Musharraf's rule was found dubious. A populist constitutional movement eventually resulted in Musharraf's departure. On 22 August 2008, the electoral commission called for presidential nominations to be delivered by 26 August 2008 and for elections on 6 September 2008.[54][55]

Figurehead overview[edit]

After the presidential election held in 2008, Asif Ali Zardari lobbied for constitutional amendment to restore the Constitution as it was in 1973.[56][57][58][59] In 2010, the Parliament unanimously and with a large majority, passed the eighteenth amendment of the constitution. It revoked the presidential powers and changed Pakistan from a semi-presidential system of government to a parliamentary republic, with great hopes of governmental stability in the future. On 9 September 2013, Mamnoon Hussain became president.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Gupta, ed. by K. R. (2006). India-Pakistan relations with special reference to Kashmir. New Delhi: Atlantic Publ. and Distributors. ISBN 8126906723. 
  2. ^ a b Article 41(1) in Chapter 1: The President, Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  3. ^ Article 243(3) in Chapter 2: The Armed Forces. Part XII: Miscellaneous in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  4. ^ Article 46 in Chapter 1: The President, Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  5. ^ Article 243(2)) in Chapter 2: The Armed Forces. Part XII: Miscellaneous in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  6. ^ Article 43(1)–43(2) in Chapter 1: The President, Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  7. ^ Article 50 in Chapter 2:The Parliament of Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  8. ^ Article 46 in Chapter 2:The Parliament of Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  9. ^ Article 54 in Chapter 2:The Parliament of Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  10. ^ Article 56 in Chapter 2:The Parliament of Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  11. ^ Article 243(3) in Chapter 2: The Armed Forces. Part XII: Miscellaneous in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  12. ^ Article 175A(3) in Chapter 2:The Parliament of Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  13. ^ Article 177A(1) in Chapter 2:The Supreme Court of Pakistan of Part VII in the Constitution of Pakistan
  14. ^ Article 45 in Chapter 2:The Parliament of Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  15. ^ Article 248(1) in Chapter 4:General of Part XII: Miscellaneous in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  16. ^ Article 41 in Chapter 1: The President of Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan
  17. ^ Govt. of Pakistan (3 March 2010). "The National Command Authority Act, 2010" (PDF). Islamabad: National Assembly press. National Assembly press. Retrieved 6 May 2015. 
  18. ^ See: The XVIII Amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan.
  19. ^ a b c d Article 41(2) in Chapter 1: The President, Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  20. ^ Crilly, Rob (10 May 2013). "Pakistan election guide: How does it work?". Telegraph, Pakistan Bureau. Telegraph. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  21. ^ Article 41(3) in Chapter 1: The President in Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  22. ^ a b c d e f APP, Associate Press of Pakistan (25 July 2013). "706 Electoral College members to elect 12th President of Pakistan". News International, 2013. News International. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  23. ^ Article 44(1)-(2) in Chapter 1: The President in Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  24. ^ Article 44(2) in Chapter 1: The President in Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  25. ^ Article 49(1)-(2) in Chapter 1: The President, Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  26. ^ Article 49(1) in Chapter 1: The President, Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  27. ^ Article 47(1)-(2) in Chapter 1: The President, Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  28. ^ a b Article 47(3) in Chapter 1: The President, Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  29. ^ Article 47(5) in Chapter 1: The President, Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  30. ^ Article 47(6) in Chapter 1: The President, Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  31. ^ Article 47(6) in Chapter 1: The President of Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  32. ^ Article 47(7) in Chapter 1: The President, Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  33. ^ Article 47(8) in Chapter 1: The President, Part III: The Federation of Pakistan in the Constitution of Pakistan.
  34. ^ See: Movement to impeach Pervez Musharraf
  35. ^ a b c d e f g h Web Edition (30 July 2013). "Mamnoon Hussain elected 12th President of Pakistan". News International, president. News International, president. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  36. ^ a b "The Constitution of 1956". http://storyofpakistan.com/. The Constitution of 1956. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  37. ^ "Iskander Mirza Becomes President". http://storyofpakistan.com/. Iskander Mirza Becomes President. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  38. ^ "Ouster of President Iskander Mirza". http://storyofpakistan.com/. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  39. ^ "Martial Law Under Field Marshal Ayub Khan". http://storyofpakistan.com/. Martial Law Under Field Marshal Ayub Khan. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  40. ^ "Field Marshal Ayub Khan Becomes President". http://storyofpakistan.com/. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  41. ^ "The Constitution of 1962". http://storyofpakistan.com/. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  42. ^ a b Staff writer. "1965 Presidential Election". http://storyofpakistan.com/. 1965 Presidential Election. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  43. ^ a b "Martial Law under General Yahya Khan". http://storyofpakistan.com/. Martial Law under General Yahya Khan. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  44. ^ "General Elections 1970". http://storyofpakistan.com/. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  45. ^ a b "The Separation of East Pakistan". http://storyofpakistan.com/. The Separation of East Pakistan. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  46. ^ a b c d "Zulfikar Ali Bhutto becomes President". http://storyofpakistan.com/. Zulfikar Ali Bhutto becomes President. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  47. ^ "Ouster of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto". http://storyofpakistan.com/. Ouster of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  48. ^ a b "Martial Law under General Zia-ul-Haq". Martial Law under General Zia-ul-Haq. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  49. ^ a b c "The Rules of Democracy". The Rules of Democracy. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  50. ^ a b c d "Ghulam Ishaq Khan becomes President". http://storyofpakistan.com/. Ghulam Ishaq Khan becomes President. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  51. ^ a b c d "Farooq Legahri Becomes President". http://storyofpakistan.com/. Farooq Legahri Becomes President. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  52. ^ "Muhammad Rafiq Tarar elected as President". http://storyofpakistan.com/. Muhammad Rafiq Tarar elected as President. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  53. ^ Waldman, Amy (January 2, 2004). "Pakistan Gives Musharraf Confidence Vote as President". New York Times. 
  54. ^ timesofindia.indiatimes.com "Pakistan presidential poll on September 6."Times of India. 22 August 2008.
  55. ^ radionetherlands.nl Pakistan to choose president on 6 September. Radio Netherlands.
  56. ^ "Pakistan's presidential poll today, Zardari front runner." Times of India.
  57. ^ afp.google.com "Bhutto's widower set to become Pakistan president." AFP 2008. Accessed 8 January 2014.
  58. ^ afp.google.com "Zardari wins Pakistan presidential election: officials." AFP 2008. Dead URL 8 January 2014
  59. ^ nytimes.com "Zardari is elected Pakistan's president." New York Times 7 September 2008.

External links[edit]