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The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Monday released the final consolidated results of all 235 seats where the local government (LG) elections took place on Sunday, reported Aaj News.

As per the results, the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) emerged as the biggest winner with 93 seats while Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) closely followed with 86.

The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) managed to bag 40 while Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) won only seven seats. Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI-F) and Independent candidates won three seats each.

Similarly, Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) won one seat and Tehreek-e-Labaik Pakistan (TLP) bagged two seats.

On January 15, the second phase of the local government elections in Sindh was held in 16 districts of Sindh — East, West, South, Central, Korangi, Keamari, and Malir of the Karachi division; and Hyderabad, Dadu, Jamshoro, Matiari, Tando Muhammad Khan, Tando Allahyar, Badin, Sujawal, and Thatta of the Hyderabad division.

However, the polls were marred with controversy on Sunday night when the PTI and the JI alleged the results of the polls were deliberately being delayed in Karachi.

The PTI openly accused the PPP, provincial administration and the electoral body of wrongdoing, warning that any attempt to “change the results” after voting would lead to a strong reaction.

JI had come up with the same reservations and allegations. Hafiz Naeem-ur-Rehman, the party’s Karachi chief, held a hurriedly called press conference in Karachi on Sunday night and warned of sieging the polling stations where he said results were deliberately being delayed “to manage things”.

It is pertinent to mention that MQM Pakistan boycotted the polls prior to the elections.

Delay: ECP says ‘process complicated, takes time to prepare results’

Responding to criticism over the delay in the results of the second phase of local government elections in Sindh, the ECP on Monday said that it takes time to prepare the results and “the process is complicated”.

In a statement, the ECP said the results were being transferred to the offices of returning officers (ROs) from all polling stations and were being prepared on an Excel sheet on computers.

PPP, JI claim victories: LG elections marred by low turnout

Meanwhile, in a press conference, Sindh Election Commissioner Ejaz Anwar Chauhan said that the ECP is aware of its constitutional duties and is sincere in “holding free, fair and transparent elections”.

We have left no stone unturned in this regard, he said.

Chauhan further said that the results of all 246 union committees of Karachi will be ready by the evening.

Responding to claims of rigging, he said the commission had a very strict monitoring mechanism and he can confidently say that no official was involved in rigging.

On Sunday, the second phase of the long-delayed local government elections in Sindh were held. The delay in declaration of results raised concerns over the transparency of electoral process and the performance of the ECP.

As the JI and the PPP claimed their victory in the polls, the MQM-P said low voter turnout was the victory of its decision to boycott the elections.

JI was leading in the elections with 34 seats then, followed by PPP (24), PTI (20), and TLP (1) as per the results of 78 Union Councils (UCs) out of the total 246, Aaj News reported.

Hafiz Naeem, JI Karachi chapter chief and the party’s mayoral candidate for the city, won from a UC in North Nazimabad. PTI’s candidate for Karachi mayor Khurram Sher Zaman lost his Union Committee in Saddar town to Najmi Alam of the PPP. Firdous Shamim Naqvi, PTI’s second mayoral contender, was facing tough competition from his opponents in a Soldier Bazaar UC.

Hafiz Naeem claims ‘rigging in process’ amid unusual delay in results

Hafiz Naeem threatened to stage sit-ins across Karachi if the results were not announced on time.

Addressing a press conference in Karachi on Sunday night, Naeem said that the presiding officers were bound to give Forms 11 and 12 as per law but some Deputy Commissioners working in favour of the PPP-led Sindh government were interfering in the process.

“If the forms are not provided in the next one hour and the ROs do not announce the results, there will be sit-ins across the city,” he warned, adding that the party would announce its strategy after consultation.

MQM-P boycotts Karachi, Hyderabad LG polls

After a day-long consultation, MQM-P on Saturday night announced that it would boycott the local government (LG) elections.

Earlier, amid speculation that the MQM-P could part ways with the coalition government or even boycott the elections, Bilawal offered the party some last-minute advice.

Talking to a private TV channel, he said the MQM-P was a “very old and senior” political party and advised it to “fully participate” in the LG elections, adding that the elections were crucial so political parties could work together for the development of Karachi and Hyderabad divisions.

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Muhammad Zeeshan Jan 16, 2023 04:49pm
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