Karachi LG polls will not be delayed: CEC

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Reserves verdict on MQM-P’s petition on voters’ lists

The Election Commission of Pakistan on Friday reserved the verdict on the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan petition challenging the voters’ lists to be used during the forthcoming local government elections in Karachi.

The MQM has raised objections to the voters’ lists under which the local government elections in Karachi would be held. During the hearing, Chief Election Commissioner Sikandar Sultan Raja remarked that the commission would not let the Karachi LG polls to be delayed.

The Muttahida Qaumi Movement lawyer said that the use of old voters’ lists during the forthcoming local government elections in Karachi was against the law. The CEC remarked that the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan used to move to the courts in the past against the delimitations of constituencies. “Why doesn’t the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan bring all the issues together? If the party has another issue, it should bring it before the commission so that we will decide all cases together,” the CEC said.

Sikandar Raja said that the LG polls were going to be held using the same voters’ lists on which the Muttahida Qaumi Movement had already contested the 2018 elections and by-elections. The Mut tahida Qaumi Movement lawyer raised another point that on April 29, the election commission was incomplete.

The CEC wondered that in its application, there was no mention of incomplete election commission. He told off the lawyer asking him to stick to his point and stop beating about the bush. “There is no way that the elections will be delayed. They will not be deferred at any cost,” the election commissioner remarked.

Sindh Additional Advocate General Fouzi Zafar requested the commission to allow him one-week more time to present his arguments on the case. But the commission abolished the Sindh government’s right of presenting arguments over its ill-preparation of the case. The Jamaat-i-Islami representative told the commission that every possible effort was being made to delay the polls but he requested the ECP to make sure that the LG elections would be held on Jan 15.