ISLAMABAD - The Senate Standing Committee on Parliamentary Affairs yesterday proposed to delete a section from Electoral Rolls (Amendment) Bill 2016 to remove the chances of giving more powers to one or more members of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP).

The meeting was held under the chairmanship of Senator Saeed Ghani here at the Parliament House.

The section 4B of the bill states, “The commission may authorise one or more of its members, acting singly or together, to exercise and perform all or any of its powers and functions under this Act.” The committee noted that this clause would give powers to one member of the commission which would kill the purpose of having members from all provinces. The members of the committee noted that decisions in Election Commission should always be made by 3-2 majority of the whole commission.

The committee also considered the Delimitation of Constituencies (Amendment) Bill, 2016 and made numerous amendments. The section 3A states, “The commission shall delimit constituencies for elections to the local governments as nearly as possible in accordance with the provisions of this Act and rules made there under.” The word ‘territorial’ was added before ‘constituencies’, word ‘of each province’ was added after local governments’ and the words ‘as nearly as possible’ were omitted. Similarly, subsections 2, 3, 4 and 5 of 3A were deleted.

The committee meeting was attended among others by Senators Farooq H Naek, Gul Bashra, Saleem Zia, Nehal Hashmi, Saifullah Magsi, Minister of Parliamentary Affairs Sheikh Aftab, secretary ministry of parliamentary affairs, additional secretary Election Commission and additional draftsman from law division.