ISLAMABAD: With the matter involving the allocation of several reserved seats in the three Assemblies pending before it, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has announced to issue the schedule for presidential election this March 1—claiming that electoral college for the election of the President would complete with the formation of all the five Assemblies tomorrow (February 29).

Conduct of the presidential election within 30 days after the general elections is a mandatory requirement in accordance with Article 41(4) of the Constitution of Pakistan, the ECP said in a statement on Tuesday.

Before this announcement, the electoral entity, Tuesday, failed to decide the issue involving the allocation of reserved seats to Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC).

PPP assails President for not summoning NA session

A five-member ECP bench headed by Chief Election Commissioner Sikandar Sultan Raja, and comprising of Nisar Ahmed Durrani, Shah Muhammad Jatoi, Babar Hassan Bharwana and Ikramullah Khan, heard this case before adjourning it till today (Wednesday).

Barrister Gohar Ali Khan and Barrister Ali Zafar represented the SIC whereas Azam Tarar from Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N), Farooq Naek from Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and Farogh Naseem from Muttahida Qaumi Movement Pakistan (MQM-P) represented their respective political parties against SIC during the case hearing.

Barrister Gohar said the PTI-backed candidates exercised their legal right to join the SIC for the allocation of reserved seats keeping in view that Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) was deprived of its iconic electoral symbol of bat before the February 8 general elections

N-League’s Tarar alleged that SIC did not submit any list for the allocation of reserved seats for Assemblies. He said the SIC did not win any seat in the general elections and the PTI-backed candidates joined SIC after general elections. Tarar demanded that SIC petition for the allocation of reserved seats be rejected. The bench decided to issue notices to all the parliamentary political parties in connection with this case and adjourned the case till today.

In the aftermath of the February 8 general elections, the PTI and SIC have forged an alliance that allows the PTI-backed candidates to join the SIC in a bid to get reserved seats in National, Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assemblies.

The number of reserved seats in NA is 70; 60 for women and 10 for non-Muslims. The ECP has notified 38 out of 60 women seats in PA and the poll body’s decision whether to allot the remaining 22 seats to SIC remains pending.

Likewise, seven out of 10 non-Muslim seats in NA have been allocated and the ECP’s decision on remaining three seats to SIC candidates is pending.

In PA, that has 74 reserved seats; 66 for women and eight for non-Muslims, 42 women seats have been allotted and the decision on remaining 24 seats is pending. Five non-Muslim seats in PA have been allotted and decision on remaining three is pending.

And, in KP Assembly, there are 30 reserved seats; 26 for women and four for non-Muslims. Five women seats have been allocated and allocation on 21 women seats is pending. All the four non-Muslim seats are yet to be allotted.

The PTI-backed candidates have at least 93 seats in NA, 113 seats in PA and at least 90 seats in KPA. Majority of PTI-backed candidates in the three Assemblies has joined SIC.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2024


Comments are closed.