As Justice Qazi Faez Isa is set to take oath as the 29th chief justice of the Supreme Court today (Sunday), social media usersand analysts expressed high hopes for the rule of law amid challenging times in the country.
Journalist Saleem Safi announced Justice Isa’s arrival in a post on X, writing “Qazi is not coming, he has arrived.”
Fahad Shahbaz, a commentator on X, said that Justice Isa faces several challenges including resolving pending political petitions and tackling the appointment of judges to the Supreme Court.
“In light of the ongoing concerns about ‘judicial activism’ in Pakistan in recent years, Justice Qazi Faez Isa, the twenty-ninth Chief Justice of the country, is set to assume office tomorrow. He faces numerous challenges, including safeguarding the judiciary’s impartiality, addressing references against judges in the Supreme Judicial Council,” he wrote.
Justice Isa was appointed to the Supreme Court on September 5, 2014. Since being implicated in a presidential reference in 2019, the judge has not been part of any benches hearing constitutional petitions.
He is taking charge amid reports of a divided court over the last few months. As senior puisne judge, he also refused to sit on benches after the court stopped the Supreme Court Practice and Procedures bill from taking effect.
Muhammad Ibrahim Qazi was hopeful that his appointment as the CJP would help in addressing the problems Balochistan is facing as Justice Isa belongs to the province.
“PM Anwaar Kakar, Chairman Senate Sadiq Sanjrani, Interior Minister Sarfraz Bugti and now Chief Justice of Pakistan Qazi Faez Isa all hail from #Balochistan. I hope the province will get the attention it deserves for social justice and welfare,” he wrote.
Gulbaz Mushtaq, another commentator said that Justice Isa has gotten a chance to uphold the Constitution as his letters propagated the rule of law and constitutionalism.
“Let’s see he becomes saviour of “nation” or Constitution,” he wrote.
Abdul Majeed Khan Marwat called for eliminating the alleged grouping among the judges of the Supreme Court and to ensure merit and seniority for appointment in the higher judiciary.
“I have great expectations from the new CJ Qazi Faez Isa. He needs to start from his own house. The groupings among the judges have to be eliminated. Merit & seniority should be the only criteria for appointment. The pendency of cases has to be dealt with on war footing,” he wrote.