ISLAMABAD, Jul 19 (APP):Senate Standing Committee on Interior on Thursday highly appreciated the security and other arrangements made by Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) for conducting General Elections 2018.
The committee met here at Parliament House under the chairmanship of Senator Rehman Malik, chairman of the committee.
The meeting was attended by members of the committee, senior officials of Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Defence, Director General ISPR Major General Asif Ghafoor, Chairman NACTA, Chairman PEMRA and Inspector General of all four provinces.
The meeting discussed the agenda items including security and arrangements made for voters, candidates, electoral staff and the vicinity/ locations of the polling stations on the election’s day.
Chairman of the committee said that “unfortunately, this time we are facing internal and external threats”. He said that Pakistan Army is playing important role in maintaining law and order situation internally along with borders of the country. He highly commended Pakistan Army for its contributions, adding that we have to fight against our enemies.
The committee strongly condemned the bomb blasts took place in Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
Secretary Election Commission of Pakistan Babar Yaqoob briefed the committee about the election security and other arrangements made by ECP for general elections.
He said that 20,000 polling stations were declared sensitive and additional security would be provided to all those polling stations.
He said that first time water mark ballot papers would be used. He said that special software would be provided to electoral staff. He said that Returning officers will share elections results on software immediately. He said that International observers welcomed and they would observe the elections process.
He said that three meetings were conducted with IGs of all four provinces regarding election security. He said that Pakistan Army would also provide assistance in security matters. He said that all the security officials were trained to make the process more transparent. Secretary ECP also appreciated the support and assistance of National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA). He also thanked all the departments assisting ECP in election process. He said that code of conduct for security officials also issued, adding that they will perform their duties in accordance with law and cooperate with DRO, Ro and Presiding Officer. He said that the monitoring teams have been appointed as per NA constituency.
He said that Monitoring teams are monitoring election campaign of candidates, political parties in constituency and report violation of the Act, Rules or Code of Conduct.
Replying a question, Secretary ECP said that all the symbols were allotted on the request of candidates by ROs.
He said that the election symbol of grave is not allotted to any candidate but it is just fake poster on social media.
Chairman of the committee directed Federal Investigation Agency to take strict action against the fake and baseless information being attributed to ECP and elections.
Chairman of the committee said that we all are here to make the election process transparent and peaceful.