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ECP clarifies media speculations over Senate elections

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ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan just made some clarification to the controversy surrounding the Senate elections.

It said it felt the need to issue a statement after various media speculations  were made over the responsibilities of the ECP in the last few days.

Earlier, ECP had clarified some reports on media that the government had nothing to do with the Senate elections and it was solely a domain of the Commission to hold them.

In a late night statement, the ECP had denied that it issued any statement on holding Senate elections, adding that the matter has not been discussed in Commission’s meeting yet. The statement denied and condemned the reports on the media.

“Till now, the commission had issued no statement, but now feels there is a need to provide legal and constitutional clarity over the matter,” the ECP statement issued on Monday read.

These are the five clarifications by the ECP:

  • Half of the Senate members will retire on March 11, 2021 after completing their six-year term.
  • According to the Constitution, elections cannot be held 30 days in advance on seats that are vacant after the expiry of the term of the members of the Senate, the ECP said, quoting Article 224(3) of the Constitution.
  • This means elections on vacant Senate seats cannot be held before February 10, 2021.
  • The last four to five Senate elections have been held in the first week of March. This time too, the ECP will announce the date for the Senate elections at a suitable time, according to the law and Constitution, through an election programme.
  • Conducting the Senate elections is the constitutional and legal responsibility of the Election Commission of Pakistan under articles 218 (3) and 224 (3) of the Constitution and Section 107 of the Election Act, 2017

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