Tuesday November 29, 2022

ECP to decide about by-polls schedule tomorrow

September 11, 2022

ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan has decided to hold a meeting on September 12 to review the latest flood situation and consider fixing dates for by-elections in 13 constituencies of Punjab, Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

A senior official of the Election Commission said that the meeting could decide about the new date of by-polls based on the latest updates and reports from authorities concerned. He dispelled the impression that the meeting had been summoned in view of political pressure, particularly from the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf. “The commission has nothing to do with the political situation or what political parties say. The decision to postpone the elections was taken Thursday purely keeping in view the ground realities and unavailability of staff from the district administration and the security agencies busy dealing with the post-flood situation,” he explained.

The Election Commission had held a meeting on Thursday, which decided to postpone by-elections as the nation was desperately trying to deal with the ‘national emergency’ caused by floods.

The constituencies, where by-elections will be held are: NA 157 Multan IV, PP 139 Sheikhupura V, PP 241 Bahawalnagar V and NA 22 Mardan III, NA 24 Charsadda II, NA 31 Peshawar V, NA 45 Kurram I, NA 108 Faisalabad VIII, NA 118 Nankana Sahib II, NA 237 Malir II, NA 239 Korangi Karachi I, NA 246 Karachi South I and PP 209 Khanewal VII.

The Interior Ministry in its feed back to the Election Commission had said that Pakistan Army, Rangers and FC were engaged in flood relief operations, internal security and prevention of terrorist activities in the country.

The ECP secretary told the forum that law and order was tense in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Because of it, it is difficult to withdraw security personnel from relief operations and make them available for holding peaceful elections, he added.

Provincial Election Commissioners of Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab also termed it impossible to hold by-elections in the current situation.