PTI 'unhappy' for ECP defying 'all sorts of pressure' after PM Imran's criticism

06:23 PM | 5 Mar, 2021
PTI 'unhappy' for ECP defying 'all sorts of pressure' after PM Imran's criticism

ISLAMABAD – The federal minister Friday expressed annoyance over the way the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) responded to Prime Minister Imran Khan’s hard-hitting statement on Senate polls.

Minister for Science and Technology Fawad Chaudhry was addressing the press conference along with Federal Information Minister Shibli Faraz and Senator-elect Barrister Ali Zafar after the ECP clarified that it will not come under any kind of pressure and will continue to work as per the constitution. 

Why ECP Issued Statement?

On Thursday, Imran Khan questioned the role of the ECP in the Senate election, accusing it of damaging the democracy in the country by supporting secret balloting for Senate polls. 

"The ECP was informed about the horse-trading beforehand but it did not take any action," he said.

He said that the ECP provided an opportunity of horse-trading to the opposition, adding that the institution has failed to hold fair and transparent elections.

issued a statement fired back on PM Imran’s allegation of corruption in Senate elections.

ECP’s Stance

Expressing disappointment over PM and his cabinet member’s remarks, the ECP said:"We cannot ignore the law and the Constitution to please anyone".

Referring to former prime minister Yousaf Raza Gilani's victory over Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh in recent Senate election, the ECP rejected all kinds of the analysis and criticism against it.

Saying the election commission hears everyone’s stance, it said that the decisions however are taken in the light of the law and Constitution independently.

He said that critics accept the results from they have won but starting hurling accusations after facing defeat in the same election conducted by the same electoral staff.

"Is this not an open contradiction?" asked the ECP.

Urging the critics to come up with evidence instead of accusing the commission of any wrongdoing, he asked them to stop with mud-slinging as such moves weaken the institutions.

PTI’s Response

Science and Technology Minister Fawad Chaudhary clarified that the prime minister and the PTI respect all institutions including the ECP. 

Rejecting rumours of staging protest in front of the ECP, he said that the institutions should prove its independence through action and not by issued press releases. 

“It is irresponsible to issue a press release on the stance of the prime minister,” Chaudhary said.

Defending premier’s criticism, he said that Imran Khan meant that the ECP and the government should work jointly to curb rigging and ensure transparency in polls. 

He added that the PTI government wanted to see the ECP as stronger institutions.