The road to electoral reform in Pakistan is long and bumpy. Yet, the first step needs to be taken to ensure fair, transparent and error free polls in 2018. It is a good omen that the government and its allies, as well as the opposition parties have forwarded the names of their members, for the proposed special parliamentary committee on electoral reforms. Much needs to be done to achieve meaningful electoral reforms. We should not be pleased simply with the proposed names. In fact, the real work will start, when the committee is to be finalized and starts working on its agenda. It is worrying that all political parties have failed to appoint a permanent Chief Election Commissioner (CEC).This is despite the fact that three acting CECs have occupied the post since it fell vacant. All political parties must solve this crisis and many other pressing issues through this committee. There is no time to waste. The work must start now without further delay to achieve electoral reforms before the 2018 elections.

MUHAMMAD ZIA AFTAB,

Lahore, July 8.