Home Latest News ECP Assures PMLN it will Conduct Delimitation, Update Electoral Rolls Simultaneously

ECP Assures PMLN it will Conduct Delimitation, Update Electoral Rolls Simultaneously

PMLN urges electoral body to take steps to restrain hate speech during campaigns

by Staff Report


The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Friday assured the Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) it will complete fresh delimitation and updating of voters’ list simultaneously to ensure a minimal delay in the conduct of general elections.

The assurances followed a meeting between the electoral body and a delegation of the Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz), part of several meetings the ECP is conducting with major political parties regarding the electoral roadmap for general elections. Prior to meeting the PMLN, the ECP conducted similar meetings with the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf and the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (Fazl). It is set to meet the Pakistan Peoples Party next week.

According to a statement issued by the ECP, the PMLN informed the electoral body that the Council of Common Interests had “unanimously” approved the results of the digital census, and their publication required the conduct of fresh delimitation in accordance with the Constitution and law. However, they suggested, the ECP should update the voters’ list simultaneously with the delimitation process to ensure a minimal delay to general elections, which are now expected to take place in mid-February, three months after the expiry of the 90-day constitutional deadline.

During the meeting, the PMLN also suggested having political parties run media campaigns rather than individual candidates, and emphasized a need for ECP officers, district returning officers and returning officers to perform their duties impartially. The former ruling party also sought a ban on hate speech and an effective mechanism to monitor poll expenses.

Per the ECP’s statement, Chief Election Commissioner Sikandar Sultan Raja assured the PMLN delegation that the delimitation exercise and updating of electoral rolls would be conducted in tandem. He also said the ECP would consult all political parties to evolve a code of conduct for the election campaign. The ECP further assured the PMLN that elections would be transparent and fair and that all parties would be granted a level playing field.

Speaking with media after the meeting, PMLN leader Ahsan Iqbal summarized the party’s suggestions, adding the ECP had agreed that election expenses should be kept under control. He also said that the delegation had proposed ensuring transparency during different election phases, noting the situation of the 2018 general elections should not be repeated.

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