ECP rejects PM Imran’s reaction on Senate elections conduct
Says will not bow to any pressure: Expresses disappointment over PM, ministers’ statements
Reacting to Prime Minister Imran Khan and federal ministers’ comments on its role in the Senate elections, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Friday said if somebody had reservations over its decisions then it should seek a constitutional way for their redressal, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.
In a written statement issued by the ECP, the commission said that it has "never come under any sort of pressure and God willing, will not in future as well". "We cannot ignore the law and the Constitution to please anyone," said an ECP spokesman.
The ECP spokesman said the Commission was saddened to hear the prime minister’s comments he had made during his televised address to the nation on Thursday last.
Referring to Yousaf Raza Gilani's victory over Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, the ECP said it 'rejects' the analysis and criticism that is being levelled over one result of the Senate elections. "This is the beauty of democracy and independent elections and the secret ballot which the entire nation witnessed, which was according to the Constitution," it said.
The ECP spokesman pointed out that the election commission was a constitutional and independent institution.
The spokesman further said that the ECP strongly rejected the prime minister’s observations about one of the Senate elections results. “Allow us to work independently,” the spokesman said and made it clear that the election commission could not be pressured.
He also made it clear that the ECP had listened to all the parties and assessed their suggestions. “We listen to all but give the verdict in the light of the constitution,” he said emphatically.
“Is not it ironical that while on one hand those election results declaring PTI candidates successful are welcome while those declaring the rival candidates successful are not acceptable notwithstanding the fact that these elections were held on the same day, under one roof and in the presence of electoral staff,” the spokesman wondered.
"Is this not an open case of contradiction?" asked the ECP.
“What the nation witnessed on the Senate elections’ day was the beauty of democracy,” he claimed and added ECP’s job was not to make laws but to give decisions in line with the constitution.
“If institutions will be kept insulted like this, this will not show that the government itself, and not the election commission, is weak,” the spokesman said.
He stressed the fact that every individual and the party should have the capacity to accept the election results. “And if somebody has objections, he or she should give evidence in support of these objections. If we can listen to your suggestions, why cannot we take up your complaints for redressal. Don’t malign the state institutions. Please have some regard for these institutions,” the spokesman concluded.
During his televised address to the nation on Thursday night, Prime Minister Imran Khan had questioned the transparency of the Senate elections, saying that the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) failed to conduct fair elections.
“The Election Commission has damaged the democracy by holding Senate elections through secret ballot,” the Prime Minister said. “Why the ECP told the top court that the Senate elections should be held through the secret ballot?” the prime minister questioned.