SC’s decision on dual nationality holders may affect Mani, Wasim

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LAHORE: The Supreme Court’s decision announced on Saturday directing the federal and provincial governments to set deadline for those civil servants having foreign nationalities or permanent residence permits to either rescind their current status or resign from the service immediately may create problems for the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Ehsan Mani and the newly appointed managing director Wasim Khan.

The PCB is also a statutory body and the decision of the Supreme Court applies on such organisations as well.

A bench of the Apex court on Saturday announced the detailed judgment in the dual nationalities’ case which says: “The acquisition of foreign nationalities and permanent residence permits etc by citizens during employment in the government service or autonomous/semi-autonomous statutory bodies/organizations and companies etc which are owned/controlled/governed by the federal and/or provincial governments, indicates, prima facie, and indeed in many cases (but not all) is, an intention to securely dispatch ill-gotten gains procured during service and to relocate their families and/or themselves during service and/or after retirement. Such individuals deserve no leniency.”

Dawn learned that initial discussion in the PCB was also held over this issue but it remained undecided about the impact of the decision on the Board.

“This is intended to send a strong signal to all officials in the employment of the government of Pakistan at any level that they must not deceive Pakistan by breaking the trust that they have been bestowed upon by virtue of their office,” the judgment adds.

The judgment was made by Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar while Justice Ijazul Ahsan was the other member at the special bench that announced the reserved verdict at the Lahore registry.

According to PCB’s constitution that came into force on July 10, 2014 through a government’s notification: “Statutory Regulation Ordinance S.R.O.43 (KE)/2014. In exercise of the powers conferred by sub-section (1) of section 3, read with section 4, of the Sports (Development and Control) Ordinance, 1962 (XVI of 1962), the Federal Government is pleased to make the following Constitution of the Pakistan Cricket Board.”

Since both Mani and Wasim have been the residents of the UK, cricket and law experts believe that both officials can come under the spotlight in view of this decision of the Supreme Court. Mani took charge as the PCB chairman on Aug 20 this year while Wasim is set to join the Board in February 2019.