ECP: (ECP orders re-election on Lower Dir’s PK-95)

June 1, 2015 Off By Web Desk

ISLAMABAD: Acting on various complaints of disenfranchisement of women voters, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Tuesday ordered re-election on the PK-95 Lower Dir constituency of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provincial assembly.

By-elections were held in the constituency in May this year after the seat was vacated by Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) chief Sirajul Haq after his election as a Senator.

JI candidate Izazul Mulk succeeded in the by-polls in May following a close contest with the Awami National Party (ANP) candidate. But the election was marred by reports of a tribal jirga barring women from voting, resulting in a low turnout of women in the by-polls.

The reports prompted civil society and human rights activists to submit a petition to the ECP challenging the results of the by-elections on the grounds that women were not allowed to vote.

Issuing a notification on Tuesday signed by Chief Election Commissioner Sardar Mohammad Raza Khan, the ECP declared the by-election null and void due to sparse turnout of women voters. The ECP said it would issue a schedule for the re-election within three days.