ECP releases schedule for Senate elections 2021

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ISLAMABAD – The Election Commission of Pakistan has announced that the Senate elections will be held on March 3.

The last date for filing of nomination papers is February 13, to be followed by a scrutiny process for the nominations which will be completed by February 12 while the last date for filing of appeals against acceptance or rejection of papers is February 18.

The date for disposal of appeals is February 20, according to the ECO. The revised list of the contestants will be issued later on February 21 while the candidates can use option of withdrawal of candidature till February 22.

The Senate elections will be held on 48 seats on March 3.

Last week, President Arif Alvi signed the Elections (Amendment) Ordinance 2021 to pave the way for Senate elections to be held via an “open and identifiable ballot”. The Supreme Court is yet to give its opinion in the matter.

According to Section 226 of the Constitution: “All elections under the Constitution, other than those of the Prime Minister and the Chief Minister, shall be by secret ballot”.

The government, on the other hand, says the nature of the elections and the way it is conducted has not been clearly mentioned in the Constitution.

The Opposition parties, meanwhile, have vowed to block the Ordinance to protect the sanctity of the secret ballot in the Senate polls.

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