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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) on Wednesday expressed surprise over the visit of the British High Commissioner to the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), saying the visit by the top diplomat is beyond comprehension.

A PTI spokesman, in a statement, while reacting to the visit of British High Commissioner to Pakistan Jane Marriott to the ECP during which she called on the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikandar Sultan Raja, said that pin drop silence from the Foreign Office over the meeting is of great concern.

“Reports that FO’s advice had been ignored by CEC about meeting with US Ambassador few days back, is already echoing in the media,” he said, adding the CEC is the main facilitator in the ongoing onslaught on the constitution and efforts to undermine democracy in Pakistan.

“During the last 17 months, the CEC used his position to deprive people of Pakistan of their basic and constitutional right to franchise,” he added.

He said that the Supreme Court of Pakistan has fully exposed the “unconstitutional and criminal” role of the ECP in its decision of April 4, 2023, regarding conducting elections in Punjab.

He called upon the Foreign Office to dispatch a copy of the apex court’s decision to the diplomatic corps so that foreign government representatives could learn about the actual role and character of the CEC.

“The Foreign Office should also apprise the foreign diplomats about ECP’s reluctance to fulfill its constitutional obligations to conduct elections within the constitutionally defined timeframe of 90 days after the dissolution of the National Assembly,” said the PTI spokesman.

He demanded that the “Foreign Office should make it clear before the foreign diplomats that the CEC, while undermining the constitutional authority of the President on the matter to fix polls date, seeks to create a constitutional crisis and undermine democracy in the country.”

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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