PPP calls for resignation of chief election commissioner

ISLAMABAD: Syed Khurshid Ahmed Shah, Leader of Opposition in the National Assembly, has called for resignation of the chief election commissioner and all four members of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) for “failing to protect their independence”.

Talking to Dawn, the PPP leader said his party would raise the issue of the “partiality” allegedly shown by the ECP in the lead-up to the presidential election during sessions of the National Assembly and Senate on Monday.

The sources said leaders of the opposition in the NA and Senate, Syed Khurshid Shah and Chaudhry Aitzaz Ahsan, would raise the matter and explain the reason for the party’s decision to boycott the presidential election after the Supreme Court allowed the ECP to advance the polling date to July 30 from Aug 6 at the PML-N’s request.

“The chief election commissioner, along with all the four members, should immediately resign,” said Mr Shah, who was head of the parliamentary committee that had approved the appointments of retired justice Fakhruddin G. Ebrahim as the CEC and the other ECP members.

He said through the 18th and 20th amendments, the ECP had been made a powerful and independent institution, but regretted that it had abdicated its powers and independence. “The May 11 elections were RO (returning officers) elections and the presidential election is the chief RO election,” he alleged.

The PPP leader said his party would never accept the results of the “manipulated presidential election” and continue to raise its voice against the alleged “nexus between the PML-N government, the ECP and the courts”.

Mr Shah also lashed out at the PML-N for seeking the Muttahida’s support for its presidential candidate.

“In my speech in the assembly (on Monday), I will congratulate Mian Sahab (PM Nawaz Sharif) for joining hands with the MQM and remind him about a resolution which the PML-N had moved in an all-party conference in London terming the MQM a terrorist party,” he said.

Mr Shah said since the PPP had announced boycott of the presidential election, its members would not attend sessions of the provincial assemblies and the parliament on the polling day.

A PPP senator told Dawn that his party would also raise other matters of public importance in the Senate.

Source: Dawn News

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