ISLAMABAD - The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) continues to sit on making the official results of local government polls of Islamabad while voters in Punjab and Sindh will go to votes on coming Saturday in the final phase of the electoral exercise.

The ECP was supposed to announce the official results of LG polls held in Islamabad on November 30 but the commission said it needed more time to consolidate the result prior to issuing the official statement.

As the political parties claim their respective victories in their own style, the lack of official number of winning candidates has given credence to the perceptions that something is going wrong in election to the seat of mayor Islamabad.

Despite that District Returning Officer (DRO) Aleem Shahab made it clear Wednesday last that he had forwarded the detailed results of entire 50 union councils to the ECP for issuing official results, the ECP said Thursday it is not bound to make the results public formally.

Official sources in ECP said the commission was in no mode to announce the results on Friday as it was over-occupied with making preparations for the third phase of polls in Sindh and Punjab scheduled to be held on Saturday.

So far ECP’s progress on post-LG polls in Islamabad is concerned; it announced having constituted an Election Tribunal (ET) for Islamabad for hearing complaints regarding local government elections.

District and Sessions Judge Sohail Ikram has been appointed as the tribunal judge.     

With ECP not coming up with the official result, there is confusion about the turnout of votes in the polls as without the consolidated results, the total turnout cannot be estimated.

As PML-N claims to have snatched 20 slots of chairmen union councils, the PTI claims it has grabbed 17 slots. But eyes are on the independents that have secured 13 positions of chairmen.

With PML-N and PTI scrambling after independents for wooing their support that will enable one of these two parties to secure the slot of mayor Islamabad, the independents have further split into two factions.

The Khokhar group claims it has secured seven seats while Chaudhary Naeem Advocate claims to have strength of six winning chairmen.

“Khokhars have approached me for merger into their group. But we six independent chairmen will hold a meeting tonight for deciding whom to join. I am contender for the slot of deputy mayor,” Naeem Chaudhry, the newly-elected chairman, told The Nation.

However, the ECP said it was all prepared to conduct the final phase of LG polls in Punjab and Sindh for which special powers have been given to Rangers and army in the two provinces.

Polling will be held in 12 districts of Punjab including Layyah, Rajanpur, DG Khan, Muzaffargarh, Rawalpindi, Jhang, Khushab, Multan, Sialkot, Narowal, Rahim Yar Khan and Bahawalpur.

Similarly, in Sindh, polling will be held in Karachi West, Karachi East, Karachi South, Karachi Central, Korangi and Malir amid fears that they election may turn violent in the country’s commercial hub.

The ECP has already announced that security duties will be performed by the Rangers and Pakistan Army personnel on polling day across Sindh, including Karachi. A notification has been issued in this regard, empowering Rangers’ officials to exercise authority of first-class magistrates.

As many as 1,791 polling stations (43pc) have been declared highly sensitive while 2,116 (54pc) are being considered sensitive for the third phase of LB polls in Karachi. All the polling stations in District Central and Korangi have been declared either sensitive or highly sensitive.