JUI-F announces movement against ‘election rigging’

ISLAMABAD  -  The Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) on Thursday announced that it will start a movement against alleged rigging dur­ing the February 8 general elections. 

JUI-F leader Aslam Ghauri, in a state­ment, said that in the initial phase of the movement, meetings at different party levels will be held. According to Ghauri, party chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman will address the meetings.

Address the meetings. “The rigging in these elec­tions has put 2018’s rigging to shame,” said Ghauri and added that a “mockery has been made of the public mandate”. Meanwhile, in an address to par­ty workers in Islamabad on Thursday, JUI-F lead­er Maulana Fazlur Rehman alleged that the estab­lishment “broke all records of interference” in the February 8 general elections.

“If the establishment interferes and chooses rep­resentatives of its own accord, then that won’t be the public mandate,” he said. Previously on Febru­ary 16, JUI-F Sindh had staged a protest demonstra­tion outside the Provincial Election Commission of­fice in Karachi against the alleged electoral fraud.

JUI-F Sindh Secretary General Allama Rashid Mahmood Soomro addressed the gathering, stat­ing that JUI-F has decided to launch a nationwide movement against “doctored election results.”

He asserted that Sindh has witnessed the worst electoral fraud, with constituency delimitations made to favour the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), and appointments of Returning Officers (ROs) and the District Returning Officers (DROs) influenced by Wadera Shahi.

He lampooned the Sindh Election Commission, the bureaucracy and the state institutions, which according to him were helpless against the pow­erful waderas of Sindh on election day. Maulana Soomro, while addressing the crowd, highlighted that police, Rangers, and army were not deployed at the sensitive constituencies in Sindh.

On February 17 workers from Ghotki and Kash­more blocked roads from Kashmore, and work­ers from Sukkur blocked roads from Sukkur. The Sindh-Punjab border was also closed for an in­definite period. He demanded that NA-191 Kash­more, PS-02 Panu Aqil, and PS-22 Thul results be released according to Form 45.

Earlier, Fazl had thrown a political curveball by rejecting the “rigged” election results while ex­tending an invitation to PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif to join him on the opposition benches in­stead of pursuing government ambitions.

The JUI-F refused to accept the electoral out­come lying down. He announced the party would kickstart nationwide protests against alleged elec­toral manipulation by “anti-Islamic forces.” During a press conference, Fazl expressed reservations about the Election Commission of Pakistan’s (ECP) role, alleging it had been “dubious from day one.” “Our central committee has rejected the election re­sults and expressed reservations about the role of the ECP, but JUI-F will play its role in the parliament and will attend it with reservations,” he stated.

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