President Arif Alvi announced 30th April 2023 as the date for the General polls in Punjab, hours after the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) proposed dates for the election in the province as directed by the Supreme Court (SC).
“President Dr. Arif Alvi has announced the date of 30th April 2023 (Sunday) for holding the general elections of the Provincial Assembly of Punjab,” tweeted the President’s office on Friday.
Earlier today Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Friday proposed dates for the election in Punjab after the Supreme Court directs ECP to issue the Election dates for Punjab and KPK Assembly.
Today In its letter to President Arif Alvi, the ECP recommended that the polls for the provincial assembly in Punjab can be held between 30th April to 07th May 2023.
The Election Commission hold a meeting today, the third consecutive meeting with Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikandar Sultan Raja in order to decide the date of Polls in Punjab.
“The commission is ready to fulfill its Constitutional and legal obligations after the selection of a date by the president,” it stated.
Remember that Punjab and KP assemblies were dissolved on 14th January and 18th January respectively, and under the law, the elections were to be held within 90 days after their dissolution.
However, after the governors’ refusal to fix a date for polls, after which the Supreme Court took the Suo motu of matter and directed the president to announce the election date in consultation with the Election commission.
It also ordered the KP governor to give an election date.
President announces Election Date
It is pertinent to mention here that Earlier President Dr. Arif Alvi announced April 9 as the date for holding general elections for Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) assemblies. They announced the date under section 57(2) of the constitution.
The moves come after Chief Election Commission decided against attending the meeting called by President Arif Alvi to discuss the dates for holding elections in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
Supreme Court Suo Motu
The Supreme Court (SC) of Pakistan in its verdict ordered the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to hold elections in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa within 90 days.
The supreme court verdict stated that the Election Commission of Pakistan failed in discharging its role in the election. The announcement of the election date in KP is the responsibility of the provincial governor, while the president has the authority as per law and constitution to fix the election date in Punjab.
The verdict said the announcement of the election in KP by the president was ‘not right’, while he enjoys the right to announce the election date in Punjab, as the provincial assembly was dissolved after 48 hours as the government refused to agree on CM’s advise.
The verdict further stated a consultation to fix the date of elections in Punjab, if they are not possible on 9th April, the date announced by the president. “Article 254 of the constitution will be enforced if the elections are not held within the stipulated time,” the verdict said.