Monday Apr 25, 2022
KARACHI: PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari Monday said his party supports all institutions in their effort to transition from "controversial to constitutional" roles.
According to a statement issued by the PPP Media Cell, Bilawal praised the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC), Sikandar Sultan Raja, for withstanding the pressure exerted by the former government and improving the functioning and standing of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP).
“Imran Khan’s politics now is to target all institutions with his Mujay Ku Nahi Bachaya campaign; his politics is now based on lies and propaganda,” he said.
Bilawal said the masses know that the only reason Imran Khan is targeting the ECP is that Raja — whom the PTI had chosen itself — "refused to turn the ECP into Imran Khan’s tiger force".
"He has stood with this institution and the Constitution, and if this attitude continues, we have hopes of seeing an empowered ECP in the future," Bilawal added.
The PPP chairman went on to say that Imran Khan’s protest call outside the offices of the ECP was tantamount to a "blatant pressure tactic to further bully, blackmail, and pressure the institution into not releasing the damning foreign funding decisions related to the PTI."
“All such efforts will fail. The truth will prevail, Insha Allah,” he added.
On Sunday, PTI leader Fawad Chaudhry announced that the party will protest outside the ECP offices across the country against the CEC Sikander Sultan Raja’s “attitude”.
Taking to Twitter, Fawad said that the PTI’s political committee met and reviewed “matters related” to the ECP.
Fawad alleged that CEC’s Raja had gone to “extremes of impartiality and dishonesty” and had claimed that “under a plan” the ECP was not issuing the notification to unseat the dissident MNAs of the party.
“Therefore, the PTI will protest outside the ECP’s office across the country on April 26, Tuesday, against the election commissioner’s attitude,” said Fawad.
He had added that all district offices of the PTI have been issued instructions regarding the protest.
The PTI has been accusing the ECP of acting impartially ever since the Islamabad High Court ordered the electoral body to wrap up the PTI's foreign funding case within 30 days.
The orders were issued on April 14 by Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani on applications filed by the PTI, asking for Akbar S Babar’s separation from the case, the dismissal of the case, and keeping the PTI documents secret.
The PTI had challenged the ECP’s applications seeking the exclusion of Babar, the petitioner, from the foreign funding case. It had also demanded that all records of the case, including the documents requisitioned through the State Bank of Pakistan, should not be shared with Babar, who had filed the case in November 2014.
However, the IHC ruled that the ECP’s role “is of important nature and same cannot be curtailed in any manner”. It noted that the body is a “supervisory, regulatory and administrative body under the Constitution of Pakistan, 1973, to deal with the affairs of political parties, election, and its results”.