Sindh governor Saeed-uz-Zaman Siddiqui passed away in Karachi on Wednesday according to the governor house spokesman.
Siddiqui had been hospitalised earlier today, DawnNews reported.
Sindh Assembly Speaker Agha Siraj Durrani will serve as acting governor of Sindh until a governor is appointed.
Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali expressed grief and sorrow over the said demise of the Sindh governor. He also announced that the provincial government will observe one-day mourning on Thursday.
He directed provincial chief secretary Rizwan Memon to coordinate with the family of the late governor and his principal secretary for making official arrangements for his burial.
The funeral prayers of Siddiqui will be held on Jan 13, after Friday prayers, at Polo Ground and he will be buried at Gizri graveyard, said Governor House spokesperson.
The retired justice was sworn in as the 31st Governor of Sindh in November 2016, just days after the federal government decided to end the 14-year tenure of former Sindh governor Ishratul Ibad.
Siddiqui, 78, suffered poor health and had been hospitalised soon after his appointment due to a chest infection and breathing problems. He was discharged from the hospital over a month later after an improvement in health.
Born in Lucknow on Dec 1, 1938, Saeed-uz-Zaman Siddiqui’s family migrated to then East Pakistan.
He acquired his early education from Dhaka and then moved to Karachi, then capital of Pakistan.
He received admission at Karachi University from where he graduated and then studied law. He enrolled as an advocate of the high court and then the apex court in 1963 and 1968, respectively.
He contested bar elections and held various positions until he was appointed a judge of the Sindh High Court in May 1980.
Ten years later, he was appointed chief justice of the Sindh High Court and in May 1992 elevated as a judge of the Supreme Court. His tenure as the 15th chief justice of Pakistan began on July 1, 1999, and ended on Jan 26, 2000.
Siddiqui was also among aspiring candidates for the post of president in 2003 and 2008.
Siddiqui’s contributions lauded
Retired Justice Shaiq Usmani, while speaking to DawnNews, said Saeed-uz-Zaman’s landmark judgements, especially in the area of civil law, will be remembered.
“He was very sharp, very competent,” Usmani said. “His loss will be felt deeply.”
Former attorney general Pakistan Munir A. Malik called Siddiqui “a judge par excellence” and “an outstanding chief justice”.
“He was a very simple person, very humble… even after his appointment to such a high post,” he said, adding that Siddiqui was a good friend of his.
Advocate Akram Shaikh remembered Siddiqui as an exemplary human being without equal. “He was a very good man, a very good judge and a very good chief justice.”