The Election Commission has given Pakistan’s Supreme Court several reasons why it cannot hold the elections and pointed to the lack of funding (Image: Reuters file)
The ECP submitted a report to the highest court in which it listed several reasons for not holding the polls and toed the line drawn by the government, calling for simultaneous elections
The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has told the country’s highest court that it has not yet received funds against the PKR 21 billion needed to organize the assembly elections in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, according to the report. ‘Press Agency Dawn said in a report.
The electoral body submitted a report to the Supreme Court in which it pointed out the unavailability of funds for the elections.
The Supreme Court of Pakistan has ordered the government to release PKR 21 billion to hold elections in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provinces.
The ECP also told the court earlier this month that it was not possible for them to hold staggered elections as it would incur more expense and said it was better to hold the whole exercise in a single day.
The ECP also pointed out that the exhausted security apparatus would need to be informed weeks before starting to prepare for the elections.
The commission argued that staggering the polls also increases the risk of violence in the polls, as the losing party in one constituency could create rowdiness in another constituency where the poll has not yet taken place in order to reduce risk of possible loss.
They were also concerned that there were cases of election rigging and that the staggering of elections gave miscreants more chances to plan and carry out attacks than the limited one-day window of opportunity.
They also said that members of law enforcement and police are currently engaged in intelligence operations in Punjab. If they are nominated at the polls, it would jeopardize electoral activities because terrorists would take advantage of this to commit acts of terrorism.
The ECP also pointed out that polarization and lack of cross-party consensus to dampen rhetoric is important because electoral violence can arise due to political polarization and increase the risk to people’s safety during polls, the Dawn said in his report.
The ECP issued a similar report earlier and the Supreme Court bench, including Justice Ijaz-ul-Ahsan and Justice Munib Akhtar, said it was “inadmissible to attempt to reopen issues and questions which have already been definitively decided” and argued that May 14 should be the date for the elections.
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