Friday July 01, 2022

LG elections postponed in KP's Baka Khel tehsil over security reasons

ECP constitues inquiry committee for fact finding of incidents

December 19, 2021
LG elections postponed in KPs Baka Khel tehsil over security reasons

BANNU: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) Sunday postponed the local government elections in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa's Baka Khel tehsil due to the poor security situation in the constituency.

In a statement, the ECP said that a new date for the elections in the tehsil will be announced later.

“The Deputy Commissioner Bannu and District Police Officer Bannu have inquired and reported the incident of abduction of police personnel, polling staff and snatching of different polling bags/materials at different polling stations of Tehsil Baka Khel in the district of Bannu," read the statement.

“The situation warrants the postponement of the polling process in Tehsil Baka Khel till the normalisation of law and order situation,” said the ECP.

It further said, “Keeping in view the deteriorating law and order situation in the tehsil, the ECP has ordered the postponement of polling in the entire Tehsil.”

The ECP has also constituted an inquiry committee comprising Special Secretary Zafar Iqbal Hussain, Additional Director General Law Khurram Shahzad and Director Elections Khushal Zada for fact finding of the incidents.

The committee has been directed to submit its report to the commission within seven days.

Woman presiding officer arrested for alleged rigging Peshawar

Earlier, a presiding officer deputed at a women's polling station in Peshawar was arrested along with her husband over allegations of rigging, long before the polling for the ongoing local government election started, Geo News reported Saturday night.

A heavy police party arrived at a polling station in the city's neighbourhood council 34, Tehsil Gor Khatri Saturday night soon after the alleged pre-poll rigging was protested by the leaders and workers of different political parties on Saturday night over reports of ballot papers being stamped in favour of PTI's candidate.

The police took the accused presiding officer and her husband into custody and shifted them to a police station, keeping them safe from the angry mob.

Meanwhile, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) took notice of the matter and changed the entire polling staff at the affected polling station.

According to Daily Jang, the opposition party workers caught the polling staff red-handed while allegedly stamping on the election symbol for a particular party's candidate for the slot of the mayor city council on Saturday night.

The protestors tried to enter the polling station but the police kept them outside. At this, they blocked the road adjacent to it and started shouting slogans.

Meanwhile, the relevant assistant commissioner also arrived on the spot.

PPP leader accuses PTI of rigging

Speaking to Geo News on the incident, PPP's Nighat Orakzai claimed PTI workers were casting 5,000 "fake votes" in favour of their candidate.

"The [PTI members] were casting fake votes since morning [...] the assistant commissioner has said that respective returning officers would be punished," she added.

'Opposition is playing tricks,' says KP chief minister

Meanwhile, Special Assistant to KP Chief Minister for Information Barrister Muhammad Ali Saif said that the opposition was playing tricks to allay their fears of failure in the election. He said that the entire polling staff is deputed at the behest of the ECP.

Said said that ECP is an autonomous body and is responsible for holding free and fair elections.

He said that the government is fulfilling all its responsibilities to hold the election peacefully and will ensure the investigations into the alleged pre-poll rigging.