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ECP says security arrangements for by-poll satisfactory

By Bureau report
February 20, 2016

PESHAWAR: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has declared the security arrangements made by the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government for the February 21 local government by-election satisfactory.

The ECP had postponed the by-election in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa for an indefinite period on January 22. The decision was taken in the wake of the terrorist attack on Bacha Khan University in Charsadda. The by-election was slated for January 23.

A high-level meeting of the officials of the ECP and high-ups of the province was held at the Civil Secretariat here. The participants discussed the security arrangements for the by-election.

ECP Additional Secretary, Fida Muhammad Khan, Secretary Home Munir Azam, Secretary Local Government, Jamaluddin Shah, Deputy Inspector General (Operations) Abdullah, DIG FC Gul Said and other officials of provincial Election Commission attended the meeting.

Talking to the media persons after the meeting, the ECP Additional Secretary Fida Muhammad Khan said the ECP was taking every step for conducting the by-election in a peaceful environment.

He said the provincial government had made satisfactory security arrangements for election and voters security. He hoped the by-election would be held in a peaceful environment. Secretary Home and Tribal Affairs Munir Azam told the meeting that the provincial government was following the ECP for holding a peaceful election in the province.

Up to 828 candidates will contest the by-election in 23 districts of the province.

A total of 443 candidates would contest for general seats in 139 neighborhood/village councils; 200 are in the field for women seats; 56 for peasant and workers seats and 47 candidates will contest for youth. Four candidates are in the field for the seats reserved for minorities.  A total of 35 candidates will contest by-election for general seats of district councils of seven wards. As many as 43 candidates are in the field for general seats of tehsil council in eight wards.

However, 574 candidates have already been elected unopposed. Out of these 61 were elected on the general seats of village/neighborhood councils; 467 on women seats; four on peasant and workers seats, eight on youth and 33 on the minorities seats.