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ECP head laughs off resignation idea pitched by Imran

Sikandar Sultan Raja says he has no reason to resign, will continue working in best national interest

Responding to former prime minister Imran Khan’s demand of resignation the other day, Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikandar Sultan Raja on Sunday said he had no intention of tendering his resignation and would continue working in the “best interest of the country”.

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan had on Saturday asked Raja to step down, saying the party believed him to be “biased”.

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Talking to a private news channel, Raja said, “I have no intention of tendering my resignation… there is no valid reason to think like that.”

“I am working in the best interests of the country and shall continue to do so,” he continued. Last week, Imran had claimed that Raja’s name for the CEC office was suggested by the establishment.

Meanwhile, the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) claimed that the former premier was targeting the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) head through a fake narrative ahead of the commission’s verdict in the PTI foreign funding case. Raja, who was appointed in January 2020, is the first-ever ex-bureaucrat to be heading the country’s apex electoral body.

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Imran had reportedly said the PTI would file a reference against Raja for ECP’s failure to conduct early elections because delimitations of constituencies were not conducted on time. He also suspected a conspiracy behind the foreign funding case – filed in 2014 by a founding member of the PTI Akbar S Babar – that nears conclusion after the Islamabad High Court ordered the ECP to conduct daily hearings.

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