ECP ready for new delimitations under new law: Secretary

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: The Secretary Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) Babar Yaqoob on Tuesday said the Commission was ready for new delimitations under new law but it depended on sharing of National Census 2017 results.

In a media briefing in Islamabad, the ECP would be able to start its work on new delimitations after notification of results of national Census 2017. He said it would not be possible for the ECP to complete its work on review on new electoral rolls and new delimitations in case of delay in publishing of results and providing other relevant details of national Census 2017.

Babar Yaqoob said the ECP had already started training of its officers across the Country on delimitation. However, he added holding of general elections was not possible without new delimitations as legally and constitutionally there were hurdles in holding next elections on existing delimitations.

The Secretary ECP said existing seats had no legal and constitutional status to have election on them after national Census 2017, adding notification of results of national Census 2017 was necessary for this activity.

Expressing his concerns over delay in publishing of results and providing other relevant details of national Census 2017, the secretary ECP said the Commission had in-writing requested the Secretary Law to complete their work so that ECP might fulfill its constitutional responsibilities. He said the Commission had several times drawn attentions of departments concerned in this regard.

Replying to a question, he appreciated the role of the Parliament for giving more autonomy to the ECP with regard to financial matters while the ECP would have also powers to form its rules with the feedback of stakeholders and general public.

The Secretary ECP said the Commission had become more accountable before general public, civil society and media. He added the Commission would present reports frequently to the Parliament besides making public its several other things.

Babar Yaqoob said now polling staff would ork under the full control of the Commission. He added the ECP had four partners included media, civil society, donors and political parties.

Earlier, officials of ECP briefed the representatives of print and electronic media in a day-long media workshop arranged by the Commission for them on laws, functioning and other aspects of the ECP besides preparation of general elections-2018.

The Additional Secretary (Admin) ECP Dr Akhtar Nazir apprised about procurement of election material, the Additional Secretary Training Zafar Iqbal informed about Elections Act 2017, the Director General Elections Yousaf Khattak talked about conduct of elections while the Director General Information Technology briefed the media persons on use of IT by the Commission.

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