Monday, December 3, 2007

Musharraf's oath a standing joke - Justice Rehman

(Courtesy DAWN)
Musharraf’s oath for the office of the president under suspended Constitution and by a judge who has himself taken oath under the Provisional Constitution Order (PCO) was a joke with the Constitution, says Justice Iqbal Hameedur Rehman of the Lahore High Court, who was among those judges who were invited to take oath under the Provincial Constitutional Order after Nov 3 but they refused.

“Such acts have no parallel in history. They can be only taken where there is a law of jungle,” he said.

Justice Rehman was on the Multan bench of the Lahore High Court when the emergency was imposed. Talking to Dawn by phone from Lahore, he said though he had taken oath as a permanent LHC judge only four days before the imposition of the PCO and at a time when his retirement was still eleven years away, it was his conscience that had restrained him from taking oath under the PCO.

He said had he taken oath, it would have pinched him forever that he had done something unconstitutional and illegal and against the decision of the seven-member Supreme Court bench that had directed the judges on Nov 3 not to take oath under the PCO.

Answering a question about the rejection of oath offer, Justice Rehman, who is the son of Justice Hamoodur Rehman, said that his family traditions did not allow him to take oath while it was also the matter of his conscience.

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