ISLAMABAD/Peshawar   -    Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan on Friday expressed surprise over Election Commission of Pakistan’s show-cause notice issued to Prime Minister Imran Khan on visiting the residence of late cabinet colleague Ali Muhammad Mahar to condole his demise.

In a tweet, the SAPM said the Prime Minister Imran Khan neither talked to media nor made any announcement for development schemes in the constituency.  She said on the contrary, Sindh government was misusing official resources and openly indulging in pre-poll rigging. She said that various provincial ministers have been assigned special duties in the said constituency and announcements regarding new recruitment, and development projects and package from Sindh Chief Minister had been made.

She lamented that on the one hand Sindh government ministers were blatantly violating code of conduct of the ECP and the PPP candidate was campaigning in protocol of the Sindh police. She asked the question why the ECP was silent on these violations of the code of conduct and did not take any notice.

Meanwhile, Provincial Election Commissioner (PEC) Pir Maqbool Ahmed Friday issued show-cause notice to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Mahmood Khan for violation of instructions and code of conduct for the provincial assembly elections in tribal districts to be held on July 20, 2019.

A copy of the show-cause notice has been emailed and whatsapped to the news agencies, newspapers and media channels by the ECP spokesman.

The notice served on KP Chief Minister over distribution of sanctioned loan letters to tribal youth at a function held to launch Insaf Rozgar scheme at Chief Minister House in Peshawar on June 20.

The KP CM has been directed to stop forthwith this programme and also explain his position otherwise, disciplinary proceedings under the relevant provisions of law would be recommended to the ECP for further necessary action in the matter, the notice added.

The official notice signed by PEC maintained that the Election Commission of Pakistan has issued schedule for provincial assembly election in tribal districts on May 6, banning thereby all government machinery and public office bearers to canvas for contesting candidates in any form whatsoever.

The notice states “You are well aware that elections in merged districts to be held on July 20 as ECP has extended the date of election from July 2 to July 20 on the provincial government’s request. It has come into the notice of the provincial election commissioner through news reports that a ceremony has been arranged in your secretariat for awarding interest-free loans documents to the youth of the merged districts by the provincial government.”

The notice further maintained that “You were informed in writing through a letter of June 20, 2019 interdict you not to conduct the said activity keeping in view the election in merged districts. However, even then this activity was conducted contrary to the standing instructions and code of conduct issued by the ECP.

Section 233 of Election Act 2017 provides that a political party, a candidate and all the government agencies shall follow the code of conduct.

Article 218(3) of the Constitution contained that ECP is responsible to organize and conduct elections in a manner to ensure that election is conduct honestly, justly, fairly and in accordance with the law and that corrupt practices are guarded against.