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Electoral reforms body fails to complete task within 90 days

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Published: November 24, 2014 04:32 pm

reforms committeeISLAMABAD: The parliamentary committee on electoral reforms, headed by Finance Minister Ishaq Dar has failed to complete its work within 90 days as prescribed by the Rules of Business of the Parliamentary Committee on Electoral Reforms.

According to the Rules the committee has to present its report to the parliament about electoral reforms within three months from the date of its notification and it may be either interim or final and it shall incorporate views of the committee members and experts and it is required to be presented to each House.

The Parliamentary Committee on Electoral Reforms was formed on 25th July after Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif wrote to the National Assembly Speaker on June 10, 214, to constitute a special parliamentary committee having representation of members from both the houses of parliament for electoral reforms. The committee was mandated to consider and present recommendations ensuring free, fair and transparent elections.

The Committee elected Senator Ishaq Dar as its chairman during its first meeting held on 6th August after main opposition party PPPP proposed his name which was seconded by JUI-F and Qaumi Watan Party-Sherpao. The Electoral Reforms Committee started its work with the recommendations on electoral reforms from the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), public and relevant stakeholders. The ECP stressed the need for amending the election laws and proposed holding of population census on an immediate basis for preparing voter lists and delimitation of constituencies for the next elections

The Committee constituted on demand of PTI had held 10 meeting so far and only first two meetings were attended by the three PTI members.

The sixth meeting of the Committee was attended by Secretary Election Commission and the representatives of National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) and Pakistan Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (PCSIR). During the meeting, PCSIR gave detailed presentation about the use of magnetic ink pads and indelible ink used by the election staff during the General Elections 2013. The PCSIR argued that the ECP was responsible for transporting the magnetized ink to polling station, saying something had gone wrong during this process.

Subsequently, the Committee has also formed a sub- committee consisting of twelve members. It is headed by Minister for Science and Techonlogy Zahid Hamid and had a total of six meetings so far. In 10th meeting of the Parliamentary committee on Electoral reforms which held on 19th November, the sub-committee on electoral reforms proposed amendments in the election laws, empowering ECP to have control over polling officials.

Finance Minister Ishaq Dar has said that that Sub-Committee of Parliamentary Committee on Electoral Reforms would complete its work within next six to eight weeks.  He said that the committee has completed work on delimitations, voter lists and reforms in election commission adding that the committee will also propose amendments in laws pertaining to election reforms.

It is to mention that committee will be able to have the delay condoned by the National Assembly regarding non-completion of task in its upcoming 16th session.

Posted by on November 24, 2014. Filed under Houses. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry