Election Commission Secretary, Ishtiaq Ahmad Khan ensured to provide level playing ground to all the political parties and contesting candidates to make sure fair, transparent and credible elections.
While talking to an eight-member delegation of National Democratic Institute (NDI) led by Joe Clark, former Prime Minister of Canada, Ishtiaq Ahmad Khan said that Code of Conduct for the political parties and candidates has already been finalized and sent to the political parties for their valuable response and now it will be finalized in the meeting of Special Committee for Electoral Issues on December 31, 2012.
He briefed the delegation about the vision and mission, role and responsibilities, composition, legal frame work and status of the ECP also informed that the Election Commission is an independent and Constitutional body and all executive authorities of the federation and in the provinces are bound under Article 220 of the Constitution of Pakistan to assist the Election Commission in discharge of its duties, he maintained.
“For the upcoming elections several steps have been taken to ensure honest and credible elections that include: result management system for making the result compilation process fast, a comprehensive voters’ awareness campaign, establishment of District Outreach and Security Committee, and setting up permanent Election Tribunal for quick disposal of election disputes in day to day hearing within 120 days, delegation of magisterial powers to the presiding officers for three days,” The secretary assured.
While briefing the delegation Muhammad Afzal Khan, Additional Secretary ECP said that voters could very easily get his/her voting detail by sending his/her CNIC number to 8300 and in case of any complaint, all the district offices of the ECP are open seven days a week to resolve the complaints about registration of vote, correction of particulars or objection about any entry therein till the announcement of election schedule.
He said that the ECP has a database of 85 million voters and all these voters have been provided the facility to check their voting details and status through SMS code 8300 but the results are not encouraging. Therefore, all the civil society organization, political parties and media are requested to kindly help the ECP in disseminating the message for the general awareness of the public.
Joe Clark, former Prime Minister of Canada highly appreciated the use of state-of-the-art technologies for verification of registration of voter with special reference to the SMS facility of sending CNIC number on 8300 from cell phone and receiving prompt response of voting details.