‘Hyderabad, Karachi LG Polls on 15th’

ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has completed all the preparations to conduct the local gov-ernment (LG) polls in Karachi and Hyderabad on January 15, ECP officials revealed to media.
Agencies reported, citing official sources, that the reserved verdict on MQM-P’s plea against dual voter lists would be pronounced tomorrow. The ECP bench headed by Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikandar Sultan Raja reserved its verdict on Friday.
Agencies add; the Election Commission has rejected MQM-P’s allegations regarding using dual voter lists and complet-ed all preparations for the LG polls in Karachi and Hyderabad. The local body elections in Sindh’s two most populous cities will be held on the old voter lists.
It should be noted that the CEC, during the hearing on MQM’s request, said that local elections in Karachi could not be postponed anymore. The ECP had told the Sindh government that the second phase of the local government polls in Karachi and Hyderabad would be held on July 24, 2022, but then it postponed them because of torrential rains and subsequent floods in the province.

The electoral body rescheduled the LG elections for August 28, but they were put off again for the same reason.

The commission had said that most polling stations had been inaccessible to the voters.

On October 18, the ECP rescheduled the elections for October 23, but the provincial government sought their post-ponement for three months because it had deployed police in the flooded areas, due to which it was unable to pro-vide the required level of security to the polling stations.

After the repeated delays, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and the Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) moved the Sindh High Court, which on November 15 instructed the ECP to announce the date for the LG elections within 15 days.

On November 22, the ECP announced January 15 as the new date. -Agencies