ECP says will continue taking decisions without bearing pressure

Commission to consult AGP, legal experts on Punjab, KP polls date | Says nowhere written in Constitution, law that ECP will give date for elections

ISLAMABAD    -    After the President’s solo move to announce election date in two provinces [Punjab and KP], The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has decided to consult the Attorney Gener­al for Pakistan (AGP) and legal experts on the matter.

President Arif Alvi, the other day [Monday], had an­nounced April 9 as the date for elections to the provincial assemblies of KPK and Pun­jab. The top election body said that a meeting with the AGP and legal experts had been called for Wednesday (today). The commission had taken this decision after the ECP reaffirmed its decision not to consult the president on dates for elections to the two pro­vincial assemblies. The ECP, in a meeting chaired by Chief Election Commissioner Si­kandar Sultan Raja, made this decision to deliberate over consulting Attorney General (AG). “It was decided that the commission will continue to take decisions as per the Con­stitution and without bearing any pressure,” according to the press note issued by the electoral watchdog. It stated that as per the law and Consti­tution, the ECP remained pre­pared to hold polls within 90 days. “But it is nowhere writ­ten in the Constitution and law that the ECP will give the date for elections. “In this re­gard, the AGP has been invited for a meeting tomorrow and for consultations, the names of two legal experts are be­ing discussed,” the ECP added. President Alvi had said the date has been announced un­der Section 57(1) of the Elec­tions Act. He asked the ECP to issue the election schedule in accordance with Section 57(2) of the Act. The president said that he was under oath to pre­serve, protect and defend the Constitution under Article- 42 read with the third schedule of the Constitution.

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