End electioneering or face the music: ECP
ISLAMABAD: (Suno News) Following an order issued by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), the electioneering for Thursday’s elections has ended across the country.
A notification issued by the ECP had stated that electioneering for Thursday’s elections would end at 12 on the night between February 6 and 7, 2024, citing Section 182 of the Elections Act 2017, which prohibits any political activity after the specified time period.
The provision reads: “Prohibition of public meetings during certain period: No person shall convene, hold or attend any public meeting, or promote or join in any procession, within the area of a constituency or, in the case of the Senate election, a Province, during a period of forty-eight hours ending at midnight ‘following’ the conclusion of the poll for any election in that constituency or Province”.
Similarly, Section 183 reads: “Penalty for illegal practice: A person guilty of the offence of illegal practice shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to two years or with fine which may extend to one hundred thousand rupees or with both”.
The relevant provision provides voters with an opportunity to thoroughly contemplate their choices before voting for their favored candidates in both the national and provincial assemblies.
The ECP warned that those candidates engaging in political activities after the deadline would face legal consequences.
The political parties and independent candidates have been carrying out door-to-door canvassing, seeking votes, and arranging logistics for election day. Meanwhile, the distribution of 260 million ballot papers and election materials has been finalized.
The candidates have arranged final rallies and events on Tuesday evening in a last-minute attempt to appeal to voters. The election campaign has been characterized by fierce political competition, passionate debates, impassioned speeches, and large-scale rallies. Candidates have sought to win over voters with their pledges, slogans, and platforms.
The ECP has also set up a control room to receive complaints via WhatsApp. The Election Management System (EMS) is superior to the last elections’ (RTS) as it operates both online and offline.