Treasury-Opp agree on formation of committee on electoral reforms

The Nation  |  Sep 22, 2021

| Speaker National Assembly Asad Qasier will be authorised to nominate members of the electoral reforms committee in consultation with Parliamentary leaders

ISLAMABAD   -  The government and the opposition finally agreed to form a ‘parliamentary committee on electoral reforms’ to break an impasse over matters related to electoral reforms.

Speaker National Assembly Asad Qasier will be authorised to nominate members of the electoral reforms committee in consultation with Parliamentary leaders, as per the decision made by the lawmakers from both sides after a long parley in the Parliament.

It was agreed that a committee comprising members from both Houses would be constituted to work on various issues related to electoral reforms. Motions would be moved in both the Houses for constitution of the Committee, according to the decision taken by the parliamentarians who met Speaker National Assembly Asad Qaiser. The members including Federal Ministers Pervaiz Khattak, Shafqat Mehmood, MNAs Ms Shahida Akthar Ali, Syed Naveed Qamar, Rana Tanvir Hussian and Murtaza Javed Abassi attended the meeting. In March, Prime Minister Imran Khan had written a letter to National Assembly Speaker Asad Qaiser asking him to form an electoral reforms committee to bring transparency to the elections.

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“I would request you [Speaker National Assembly] to immediately form an inter-party parliamentary committee to discuss these reforms and come to an agreement on how to introduce best practices including the use of technology and introduction of EVMs (electronic voting machines) to strengthen our electoral system and democracy,” he mentioned in his letter.

He also had mentioned the task should be completed in a definitive time frame so that enough time is given to the relevant institution to bring reforms before the next general elections. Following receipt of PM Imran Khan’s letter, Speaker National Assembly had written a letter to parliamentary leaders regarding the formation of a committee to oversee the issue of electoral reforms.

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Qaiser wrote that in the past there was a “market for buying and selling of votes, a practice which needs to be eradicated.” Apart from the formation of the parliamentary body, the government and the opposition had difference of opinion over the EVM. The opposition members in their statements had strongly opposed the idea floated by the PTI’s govt about EVM. 


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