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Ayesha Malik will become Pakistan's first female Supreme Court judge

The Judicial Commission of Pakistan, led by Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed, supported Malik's elevation by a majority of five votes to four

Ayesha Malik will become Pakistans first female Supreme Court judge

A high-power panel accepted the elevation of Lahore High Court judge Ayesha Malik to the Supreme Court on Thursday, bringing Pakistan closer to appointing the country's first female Supreme Court judge.

According to the Dawn newspaper, the Judicial Commission of Pakistan (JCP), led by Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed, supported Malik's elevation by a majority of five votes to four.

Following the JCP's endorsement, her name will be evaluated by a legislative committee, which rarely goes against the JCP's suggestion.

The JCP is convening for the second time to vote on Justice Malik's promotion.

Justice Malik's name was first presented to the JCP on September 9 of last year, but the panel was evenly split, resulting in her candidacy being rejected.

Due to the question of seniority, the Supreme Court Bar Association has expressed misgivings over her appointment.

President Abdul Latif Afridi had organised a national protest against her name being considered, claiming that she was junior to several justices serving in the country's five high courts.

The Pakistan Bar Council (PBC) had threatened to boycott courts if the JCP decided to take her name into consideration this time. The PCB is anticipated to campaign against her approval.

Justice Malik was appointed to the Lahore High Court (LHC) as a high court judge in March 2012, and she is now ranked number four on the LHC's judge seniority list. If she is confirmed, she would serve as a Supreme Court judge until June 2031, when she will retire at the age of 65.

She will also be Pakistan's most senior judge, with the possibility of becoming the country's Chief Justice in January 2030.

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