RULE OF LAW IN QUESTION VACANCY IN THE HIGHEST JUDICIAL OFFICE?

According to the constitution, “The Chief Justice is the head of the Judiciary and is responsible for the administration and supervision of the courts.”

This position should never remain vacant. Ex-Chief Justice Chowhan left the country without any official announcement of his departure.

The Constitution says: “In the event of there being a vacancy in the office of the Chief Justice the President may appoint the most senior judge of the Supreme Court to act in that office until a person has been substantively appointed to, and assumed the functions of that office. A vacancy in the office of Chief Justice shall be filled by a substantive appointment within six months.”

One expected that a substantive holder of the office of Chief Justice would be sworn in with immediacy in accordance with the dictates of the Constitution which asserts that, “Before assuming the functions of his or her office, a judge of the superior courts shall take the prescribed oaths.”

The Attorney General, the principal legal adviser ought to remind the executive of the need for a Chief Justice to assume office by being sworn in. Birth day parties and party motivated national tours should not overshadow constitutional responsibilities.