Pakistan’s President Arif Alvi has sparked a constitutional crisis by claiming that he did not sign two crucial laws that would give more power to the state and the military to prosecute people for acts against national security.
The laws, namely the Official Secrets (Amendment) Bill, 2023, and the Pakistan Army (Amendment) Bill, 2023, were passed by both houses of Pakistan’s parliament in August before it was dissolved ahead of the general elections scheduled for October. However, they required the president’s assent to become effective, according to the Constitution.
On Sunday, Alvi took to social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter, to declare that he had refused to sign the bills and had instructed his staff to return them unsigned to the legislature within the stipulated time. He said he disagreed with the laws and asked for forgiveness from those who would be affected by them.
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