Senior lawyer Akhtar Hussain said on Tuesday that Chief Justice Qazi Faez Isa had agreed to give up his discretionary powers to nominate and appoint judges and the Judicial Commission could have its rules amended soon.
Hussain, who is part of the Judicial Commission as a reprsentative of the bar council, made the revelation in Spotlight with Munizae Jahangir on Tuesday.
Qadir Mandokhail said that ordinary government employees were interviewed multiple times for their jobs while igh court judges are appointed directly. He added that the post of high court judges are not even advertised
However, he accused that ministers of lawyers in both PTI and PDM government had used delay tactics in the issue despite appreciating his view point.
He added that judges are always appointed from a chamber and a poor man’s son has no chance of becoming a judge.
Mandokhail also claimed that former Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry had threatened to roll back the 18th amendment unless the 19th amendment was carried through.
Ahmad Awais said that that there was no tradition in the country yet that a person in a position of power would dispassionately use his intellect in the national interest.
He said that intelligence agencies could vet a judge if it had a report on their integrity as a lawyer or judge but no role beyond that was acceptable.
Awais said at the present moment, the entire role belonged to the intelligence agencies. He said that rule of law was being substituted by rule of authority and all institutions must remain in their ambit.
Akhtar Hussain said that in his view the involvment of institutions in the selection of judges had ceased to exist. He said that the bar council had objected to the matter as the reports sent regarding the judges had no signatures.
He said that it had been discussed in the Judicial Commission that if any intelligence agency had a report to submit regarding a judge they should talk to the ministry of law or the attorney general but the reports would not be presented in court. However, the law minister or AG could communicate the concerns as their own input which would be accepted by the commission.
Hussain said that the main issue in the process of selecting and appointing judges was the rules of the Judicial Commission itself.
He added that the bar council had proposed through a resolution that all stakeholders should have equal stakeholders in the commission. However, the 19th amendment had created an absolute majority of judges in the commission, he said.
Hussain added that the constitution gave powers to the judicial communication but they were being exercised by the chief justice as per his own discretion, even to the extent of proposing names of judges.
He added that the bar council was demanding a change in the rules and gave credit to Chief Justice Qazi Faez Isa for showing a willingness to give up his discretionary powers.
However, Mandokhail questioned if the provincial chief justices were also willing to give up their powers as they were the ones making fresh appointments and SC only elevated them later on.