ECP reserves verdict in PTI prohibited funding case

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CEC Raja says respondents could be summoned again if needed

The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Tuesday reserved its verdict in the much-delayed prohibited funding case — previously referred to as the foreign funding case — against the PTI.

The case, which was filed by party founding member Akbar S Babar, has been pending since Nov 14, 2014. Babar, who is no longer associated with PTI, had alleged serious financial irregularities in the party’s funding from Pakistan and abroad.

The PTI has denied any wrongdoing, and maintains the funding is not from prohibited sources. A bench headed by Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikander Sultan Raja presided over Tuesday’s hearing. CEC Raja remarked that the case against the PTI had concluded, adding that the electoral watchdog also wanted to conclude the cases against other political parties.

He went on to say that the ECP wanted to restore voter confidence and strengthen the country democratically. At the conclusion of the hearing, the commission reserved its verdict in the case but CEC Raja said that the respondents could be summoned again if need be. During Tuesday’s hearing, petitioner Babar’s financial expert, Arsalan Wardak, pointed out that it was an “established fact” that money was received from Britain. He also highlighted that no one was aware of the origins of the money received from Canada.

“Funds were received from Wootton Cricket Limited for which the registration number has been provided.