ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has sought, within 14 days, an explanation from Prime Minister Imran Khan for not holding intra-party elections that were due in June this year.
In a showcause notice sent to the prime minister, the ECP asked the prime minister to explain why his party "may not be declared ineligible to obtain an election symbol for upcoming elections" over not holding intra-party elections.
The Commission said that it would take further action under the law, if the premier failed to furnish a reply to the notice.
Section 201(1)(f) of the Elections Act 2017 makes it mandatory for political parties enlisted with the ECP to hold intra-party polls.
It reads, "Constitution of political parties-(1) A political party shall formulate its constitution, by whatever name called, which shall include-(f) procedure for- (i) election of office-bearers; (ii) powers and functions of office-bearers including financial decision-making; (iii) selection or nomination of party candidates for election to public offices and legislative bodies; (iv) resolution of disputes between members and political party, including issues relating to suspension and expulsion of members; and (v) method and manner of amendments in the constitution of the political party."
Section 209(1) of Elections Act 2017 reads that a political party shall, within seven days from completion of the intra-party elections, submit a certificate signed by an office-bearer authorised by the party head, to the ECP to the effect that the elections were held in accordance with the constitution of the political party and this Act to elect the office-bearers at the federal, provincial and local levels, wherever applicable.
Section 215 (1) deals with eligibility of political parties for election symbols.
This Section reads, "Eligibility of party to obtain election symbol-(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in any other law, a political party enlisted under this Act shall be eligible to obtain an election symbol for contesting elections for Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament), provincial assemblies or local government on submission of certificates and statements referred to in Sections 202, 206, 209 and 210."
Copyright Business Recorder, 2021