ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) Friday said it had finalised arrangements for the first phase of the local government elections in Sindh’s 14 districts and that of Swat in KP, being conducted tomorrow (Sunday).
The Election Commission, in a statement issued here, said that the armed forces and Rangers personnel will patrol all the constituencies where elections are to be held, before and during the electoral process. The commission said it was in contact with the army, Rangers and other law enforcement agencies, all of whom have assured full cooperation. The electoral body has already directed the government of Sindh to deploy additional police force from other districts to the areas where elections are to take place, to ensure the holding of peaceful polls and has been assured of implementation.
The 14 districts of Sindh where LG polls are being held include Larkana, Kambar-Shahdadkot, Shikarpur, Jacobabad, Kashmore, Sukkur, Ghotki, Khairpur, Naushahro Feroze, Shaheed Benazirabad, Sanghar, Mirpurkhas, Umarkot and Tharparkar. Besides, it will also be held in district Swat of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
The Election Commission said it will monitor the electoral process before and on the polling day while all the relevant quarters, including the Interior Ministry, will assist it. It said its offices will remain open on Saturday and Sunday and it would be possible to contact its central and provincial control rooms. Moreover, the ECP said police will provide security to the presiding officers and stay with the polling staff till the completion of the polling process.
It said the presiding officers have been issued instructions to keep their location on while taking snapshots of Form 45 and send it to the returning officer in the presence of polling agents. In case of no Internet connectivity, the presiding officer will submit an original copy to the returning officer besides showing him the snapshot with forensic details, including time and location. The ECP has also told the candidates that their polling agents should not leave the polling station without a copy of Form 45 duly signed by the presiding officer.