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ISLAMABAD: National Assembly Speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf said on Wednesday that the general elections cannot be held in 90 days after the 2023 census approval.

Ashraf said in a statement that the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) would announce the election schedule after completing the new delimitation under the 2023 census data.

Regarding the recent Supreme Court ruling, Ashraf clarified that the Review of Judgements and Orders law was not against the top court and it had not curtailed the apex court’s powers. “It would be better if the Supreme Court (SC) reviewed the law.”

SC decisions: Speaker NA conveys MNAs’ concerns to CJP

The NA speaker said that the next assembly will review the law again.

He said that the president had returned the Universities’ Bills unsigned. He added that the PDM-led assembly carried out better legislature in a short period.

He urged the stakeholders to find possible solutions to the issues via political dialogues after fresh elections.

Earlier, Pakistan Muslim League- Nawaz (PML-N) leader and former interior minister Rana Sanaullah said that the upcoming general elections will be held in February 2024.

He said that the nation will listen only to what PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif says. The date of his return will be either set by the party or Nawaz Sharif himself, he added.

He said that all parties should be allowed to contest elections except those who were involved in the May 9 violence; however, it is not true that PML-N wants to remove the election symbol of PTI from the ballot paper.

On the other hand, Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) central leader Senator Raza Rabbani criticised that six days passed since the dissolution of the National Assembly, but the ECP has yet to announce elections.

“Time passes rapidly over the 90 days’ constitutional deadline for elections but regretfully the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has yet to issue a comprehensive statement on the election,” he said.

“The ECP should inform about the time limit it required for fixing boundaries of constituencies after approval of the digital population census results,” Rabbani said.

“The election commission should not treat the issue as a routine matter,” he emphasised.

“The delay in holding elections within the period allowed by the constitution will bring serious consequences for the federation,” Senator Rabbani cautioned.

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