Friday, February 10, 2023

ECP asks provinces to observe local holiday during March 16 by-polls

ECP says constitutionally bound to hold by-elections in 60 days

An undated image of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) building. — Facebook/ECP
An undated image of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) building. — Facebook/ECP
  • ECP to write to provinces to declare local holiday on March 16. 
  • ECP says constitutionally bound to hold by-elections in 60 days.
  • Polls to take place as PTI lawmakers had resigned.

ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Friday directed provinces to observe local holidays in the 33 National Assembly constituencies where by-polls will take place on March 16, sources said.

The ECP, the sources said, has maintained that it is bound to hold by-elections in 60 days. The by-elections on the 33 seats could not be extended, clarified the electoral watchdog.

The development comes after the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) called for extending the from March 16 (Thursday) to March 19 (Sunday) in a bid to ensure maximum voter turnout.

The party's lawmakers had resigned en masse from the lower house of parliament following the ouster of PTI Chairman Imran Khan in April last year. 

After the approval of the resignations of PTI members of the lower house, the ECP announced that by-elections for 33 vacant seats will be held on March 16.

Later, the PTI pleaded with the electoral watchdog to hold the by-elections for the 33 NA seats on March 19 instead of 16.

By-elections for 33 vacant NA seats

On January 27, the ECP announced that by-elections for 33 vacant seats will be held on March 16.

“In pursuance of Section 57 of the Elections Act, 2017 (Act No. XXXIII of 2017), read with Section 102 and clause (4) of Article 224 of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, the Election Commission hereby calls upon the electors of the undermentioned constituencies of the National Assembly of Pakistan, which have become vacant due to resignations and specifies in relation thereto the following dates for by-elections,” the notification issued by the ECP read. 




1.NA-04 Swat-III
10.NA-53 Islamabad-II
19.NA-126 Lahore-IV
28.NA-247 Karachi South-II
2.NA-17 Haripur-I
11.NA-54 Islamabad-III
20.NA-130 Lahore-VIII
29.NA-250 Karachi West-III
3.NA-18 Swabi-I
12.NA-57 Rawalpindi-I
21.NA-155 Multan-I
30.NA-252 Karachi West-V
4.NA-25 Nowshera-I
13.NA-59 Rawalpindi-III
22.NA-156 Multan-III
31.NA-254 Karachi Central-II
5.NA-26 Nowshera-II
14.NA-60 Rawalpindi-IV
23.NA-191 Dera Ghazi Khan-III
32.NA-256 Karachi Central-IV
6.NA-32 Kohat
15.NA-62 Rawalpindi-VI
24.NA-241 Korangi Karachi-III
33.NA-265 Quetta-II
7.NA-38 D.I. Khan-I
16.NA-63 Rawalpindi-VII
25.NA-242 Karachi East-I

8.NA-43 Khyber-I
17.NA-67 Jhelum-II
26.NA-243 Karachi East-II

9.NA-52 Islamabad-I
18.NA-97 Bhakkar-I
27.NA-244 Karachi East-III

Elections schedule

As per the ECP announcement, candidates were asked to file their nomination papers between February 6-8.

The names of the candidates were to be published on February 9, while the returning officers (RO) will carry out the scrutiny of the nomination papers till February 13.

The last date to file appeals against the RO’s decision on the acceptance or rejection of nomination papers is February 16.

According to the election schedule, the last date for the appellate tribunal to decide on the appeals is February 20. After this, the revised list of candidates will be published on February 21.

The last date to withdraw candidature and release of revised list of candidates is February 22 while the election symbols will be allotted on February 23 and the polls will be held on March 16.