ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan’s (ECP) latest decision to allow only female polling stations at female polling booths has prompted leaders of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) to express reservations over the move.
The leaders have questioned the order’s timing and said that “unnecessary actions” make the polling process controversial.
PPP Secretary-General Farhatullah Khan Babar said, “The latest order is an explicable departure from the past practice and aimed at leaving female polling stations entirely at the mercy of official polling staff without necessary oversight by the representatives of political parties.”
PTI Information Secretary Fawad Chaudhry said that traditionally this is how it has been done but if there is no provision in the law for this then there must be no restrictions such as these.
PML-N Information Secretary Mushahidullah Khan said that there was nothing wrong with the latest ECP order but the timing has prompted political parties to question the move.
ECP Spokesman Chaudhry Nadeem Qasim said that the order had been issued in light of “social and moral values”.