ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court of Pakistan on Thursday ordered all provincial governments to hold local government elections in their respective provinces not later than September.
A three-member bench of the apex court headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry was hearing the Balochistan law and order case in Islamabad on Thursday.
During the hearing, the bench said that holding of local government elections is the constitutional responsibility of the incumbent provincial governments and the polls should be held in September.
The Chief Justice noted that constitution has been violated by not holding the local government elections during the last five years.
The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) informed the court that 90 days would be required to hold local government elections after a notification was issued in this regard.
Advocates general of Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa expressed their readiness to hold local government polls, whereas the Sindh government asked for a five-month period, drawing the ire of the apex court bench.
Justice Iftikhar remarked that if the provincial governments were not willing to hold local government elections then the court would decide the issue and would not let any delays to occur on the matter.
The Chief Justice further said that the ECP should not shy away from its responsibilities and that local government polls should be held in September.
The case’s hearing was subsequently adjourned to July 22.