ISLAMABAD - While the major opposition party (PPP) has now started proposing amendment in the Constitution for the appointment of chief election commissioner (CEC), the government is unwilling to give a chance to senior bureaucrats and lawyers on this slot.
The delay in the appointment of chief election commissioner (CEC) due to some legal hitches triggered the opposition parties to give new proposals as they even asked the government to give a chance to lawyers and senior bureaucrats for this vacant post.
Receiving no satisfactory response from the government, Leader of Opposition in the National Assembly Khursheed Shah introduced a new plan that tenure of the government should be curtailed to four years after the completion of the incumbent government’s five years. “This change will end all the conflicts,” he said.
Shah, who had a meeting with Finance Minister Ishaq Dar the other day (Monday), has now started proposing amendment in the Constitution for the appointment of CEC.
On the other hand, the government side seems unwilling to approve his idea to fill this post in such a way. “”the opposition leader did not discuss this idea with me last day,” Ishaq Dar told The Nation, adding that he should come forward and introduce amendment in the parliament.
Dar further said a proper process to appoint chief election commissioner (CEC) is underway and soon development would be made public.
“The government and the opposition have held a meeting to resolve this matter and opposition parties are also holding discussion on it,” said the finance minister who was asked by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to hold a meeting with the opposition leader to resolve this matter.
As Opposition Leader Syed Khursheed Shah, a day after meeting with Dar, proposed to the government to introduce constitutional amendments in order to appoint senior bureaucrats and lawyers for the slot of chief election commissioner (CEC). Chief election commissioner (CEC) should be independent as his role is like a member of the body. “Options are limited due to constitutional bar that only a judge could be appointed as CEC,” he said, arguing about the appointment of CEC in case a suitable judge was found. The PPP leader also wrote e a letter to the prime minister a couple of days back to immediately appoint a regular CEC in the country.
The office of CEC fell vacant when Justice (r) Fakhruddin G Ebrahim resigned in July last year. The government and opposition factions have not reached a consensus for the appointment of CEC due to some legal hitches. The Supreme Court had also set a deadline after seeing impasse over the issue, which also expired on March 19.
Earlier, the government, paving the way to appoint Rana Bhagwandas on the post, had got ‘Federal Public Service Commission (Amendment) Bill, 2014’ passed in the lower house with certain amendments, but the matter is still unresolved.
GOVT TO MAKE ELECTORAL PROCESS MORE
Online adds: Federal Minister for Information Pervaiz Rashid says the government will support every step to make the electoral process more transparent.
Talking to media here on Tuesday, he said Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Chairman Imran Khan should play a more active role in electoral reforms committee of the Parliament as change would come from the Parliament, not through street politics.
The federal minister said the government is providing assistance to the internally displaced persons of North Waziristan Agency in cash and kind.
Meanwhile, talking to Voice of America (VoA), the information minister said there is a temporary ban on NGOs to carry out relief activities for the IDPs.
He said the people of North Waziristan and the militants have their own mindset about the NGOs.
The minister said the government will provide security to these organisations if they are allowed to work in the area.
He acknowledged providing relief to the IDPs is a challenge.
The federal minister said there were two options with the government to either leave the people on the mercy of terrorists or defeat terrorism forever.
He said the government opted for the second option with the national support to wipe out terrorists.