ECP expresses concerns over KP governor’s ‘choice of words’

ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has expressed reservations over Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Governor Haji Ghulam Ali’s letter, saying that the latter should have used ‘better words’ while addressing other constitutional institutions, ARY News reported, citing sources.

Sources told ARY News that the electoral watchdog has objected to the ‘language used in the letter’ written by KP Governor to the ECP secretary.

“The governor should have used better words for consultation on holding elections in the province,” sources said while quoting ECP officials. They added the governor has nothing to do with holding ‘peaceful’ elections, and that it could not consult him on law and order.

Sources while quoting the officials claimed that the governor has no role in the Constitution except fixing a date for elections, adding a caretaker government and law enforcement agencies (LEAs) were bound to assist the commission.

A day earlier, the KP governor penned down a letter to ECP, inviting the commission for consultations on the elections on March 7 or 8.

The letter was penned down in response to a letter sent by the ECP for the announcement of the election date.

ECP invites KP governor

Earlier in the day, ECP invited KP Governor Haji Ghulam Ali to visit Islamabad office for consultation on date for holding election in the province.

In a statement, the ECP invited Haji Ghulam Ali to visit Islamabad office, saying that ‘meaningful consultation’ will be possible if the latter visit its office.

SC verdict

The Supreme Court, in a 3-2 verdict, ruled on Wednesday that elections in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab should be held within 90 days.

CJP Justice Umar Ata Bandial, Justice Munib Akhtar and Justice Muhammad Ali Mazhar supported the verdict, while Justice Jamal Mandokhail and Justice Mansoor Ali Shah opposed the admissibility of the suo moto notice and dissented from the majority verdict.

Justice Shah and Justice Mandokhail in their dissenting notes agreed with the position of Justice Yahya Afridi and Justice Athar Minallah. “The matter was already being heard in the high courts, Supreme Court cannot take suo moto notice on the undertrial cases in the high courts.”

The short verdict stated that the Election Commission of Pakistan failed in discharging its role in the election. The announcement of the election date in KP is the responsibility of the provincial governor, while the president has the authority as per law and constitution to fix the election date in Punjab.

The verdict further stated a consultation to fix the date of elections in Punjab, if they are not possible on April 9, the date announced by the president.


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