ECP gears up to hold elections as early as possible

Spokesman says commission has shortened time for delimitations by Nov 30 n Decision taken after holding consultations with political parties n Elections schedule to be announced keeping Nov 30 date in mind.


ISLAMABAD  -  The Election Commission of Pa­kistan (ECP) Friday decided to reduce the timeframe of the de­limitation of constituencies for further one month in order to announce election schedule as earliest as possible.

It has been claimed now that the delimitation of constituen­cies will be completed by No­vember 30.

“The purpose of reducing the timeframe of delimitation is to hold elections as soon as possi­ble," according to the electoral watchdog sharing the argument to reduce the period.

“The polls schedule will be an­nounced keeping this date in mind,” it stated, adding that the decision has been taken after feedback from various political parties. The ECP has been hold­ing consultations with various parties on the electoral roadmap in recent days.

The ECP further argued that its decision to push elections beyond November 9 on the basis of the notification of results of the new digital 2023 census and Section 17(2) of the Elections Act, which states: “The Commission shall de­limit constituencies after every census is officially published.”

The ECP also claimed it would carry out work on delimiting constituencies and updating the electoral rolls side by side to en­sure the work is done in the min­imum possible time.

The ECP also said that a date for the elections will also be an­nounced keeping in view the schedule for the delimitation process, adding that the date was announced after delibera­tion with the parties. 

Earlier in the day, a consultative meeting took place between the ECP and the Grand Democratic Alliance (GDA) to discuss a road­map for the coming elections.

The meeting was presid­ed over by Chief Election Com­missioner (CEC) Sikandar Sul­tan Raja. Fehmida Mirza, Safdar Abbasi, Kashif Nazamani and Ibn Muhammad were part of the GDA delegation while party leaders Sardar Abdul Rahim and Irfanullah Khan Marwat participated via video link. Ac­cording to a handout issued by the ECP, the GDA delegation assured full support to ECP’s delimitation plan and said that the delimitation was the basis of holding transparent polls. 

The Election Commis­sion has held consultations with political parties includ­ing Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N), Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), Paki­stan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), Ja­maat-e-Islami (JI), Muttahi­da Qoumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) Jamiat Ulema Is­lam-Faiz (JUI-F) and others re­garding the road map to gen­eral elections. 

It may be noted here that almost all the political par­ties have asked the Commis­sion in the recent consulta­tive meetings to complete the process as soon as pos­sible. In those meetings, the JUI-F, PML-N and MQM-P had backed the ECP to hold general elections after the delimitation while the PTI and PPP had urged the elec­toral watchdog to drop the process and conduct polls within 90 days. On August 17, the ECP announced the schedule of new delimita­tions to be carried out as per the new census approved by the Council of Common In­terest (CCI) last month. Ear­lier, the ECP schedule had shown that the fresh delim­itation would take nearly four months. 

The previous coalition government dissolved the national and provincial assemblies of Sindh and Ba­lochistan prematurely to al­low the ECP to hold elections in the country within 90 days instead of 60 days if the leg­islature completed its consti­tutional tenure.

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