Asif Ali Zardari, former president and co-chairman of the Pakistan Peoples' Party (PPP), Saturday came to the defence of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), asserting that a fresh delimitation exercise has become obligatory following the notification of the new census.
Zardari's statement, conveyed by the PPP through its social media accounts, emphasised the electoral authority's mandate to conduct elections in accordance with the Constitution.
The former president also expressed unwavering confidence in Chief Election Commissioner Sikandar Sultan Rana and the commission's members.
Zardari's statement followed calls from various PPP leaders, including party's chairman Bilawal Bhutto, urging the ECP to announce the date for general polls and adhere to the constitutional requirement of holding elections within 90 days.
The party reiterated these demands during its delegation's meeting with members of the ECP.
“The stance we adopted today is that the PPP wants the ECP to announce a new election date and the schedule for it. There is restlessness in the nation, and it is very important that a new election date and schedule is announced,” PPP’s Nayyar Bukhari said after the meeting on August 29.
Many within the political circles were surprised over the party’s change of stance considering that its members also voted in favour of census approval.
In his statement today, the former president backed the Election Commission and said that the body is bound to carry out the delimitation after notification of census results.
Asif Zardari also urged the caretaker government to complete the initiatives taken under the Special Investment Facilitation Council (SIFC) — an apex body formed by the previous government to attract investments from foreigners.
“The country should be put on the path of development by completing these projects,” he added.
“The country is currently going through an economic crisis. We all should worry about the economy first instead of politics.”