The local government elections in Karachi scheduled for January 15 are likely to be postponed for the seventh time as the Sindh government has reportedly written another letter to the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to delay the polls.
In the letter, the PPP-led provincial government has reportedly cited the MQM-Pakistan’s demand for fresh delimitation of the constituencies as the reason for postponing the local government elections.
The provincial government has also referred to the petition filed in the Supreme Court regarding the delimitation. The letter sent to the provincial election commissioner contained the opinion of the Sindh advocate general on the changes in local government constituencies and other legal points.
According to reports, the fresh delimitations can be held in view of the court order and opinion of the Sindh advocate general, which could delay the local government polls in the metropolis once again. The ECP announced in November that local government elections in Karachi and Hyderabad divisions would be held on January 15, 2023.
The polls, originally scheduled for July 24, have been postponed several times due to the Sindh government’s repeated requests that the required police officials were busy with flood relief operations.
Moreover, the MQM-Pakistan has already rejected the delimitations held by the PPP-led Sindh government and the Election Commission in Karachi, terming the process unfair.
Meanwhile, the ECP has drawn the attention of all members of parliament and provincial assemblies to submit their statements of assets and liabilities including those of their spouses and dependents by December 31.
According to ECP, all parliamentarians have to submit their yearly statements of assets and liabilities, including similar details of their spouses and dependent children, on the preceding June 30 on Form B for the financial year 2021-2022.
The commission will on January 16, by order, suspend the membership of a member of an assembly or Senate who fails to submit the statement of assets and liabilities and such a member shall cease to function till (s)he files the same.
The ECP further said that any member submitting a fake statement of assets and liabilities under this section in material particulars may, within 120 days from the date of submission of the statement, be proceeded against for committing the offense of corrupt practice.
The ECP said that the prescribed form, along with instructions and guidelines prepared in this regard, can be obtained free of cost from the Election Commission of Pakistan Secretariat, Islamabad, offices of provincial election commissioners in each province, Senate Secretariat, National Assembly, and secretariats of provincial assemblies.