ECP complete after members take oath ISLAMABAD: Chief Election Commissioner retired Justice Sardar Muhammad Raza administered the oath on Wednesday to four new members of the Election Commission of Pakistan, marking completion of the ECP.
Abdul Ghaffar Soomro from Sindh, retired Justice Altaf Ibrahim Qureshi from Punjab, retired Justice Irshad Qaiser from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and retired Justice Shakeel Baloch from Balochistan took the oath.
The first engagement of the newly appointed ECP members will be the hearing of a disqualification petition against Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s son-in-law retired Capt Muhammad Safdar, scheduled for Thursday. The petition was filed by Nawabzada Salahuddin of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf who had contested the 2013 general elections against Mr Safdar from Mansehra. The grounds for disqualification are alleged concealment of assets of his spouse, Maryam Nawaz.
Talking to Dawn, Advocate Faisal Chaudhry, the petitioner’s counsel, said: “I expect that the new members will assert their jurisdiction without giving in to pressure of the government or any other quarter and believe that it is a chance for them to establish their reputation as independent and impartial components of the ECP.”
Meanwhile, the Pakistan Institute of Legislative Development and Transpar-ency (Pildat) expressed concern over the delayed and ‘apparently flawed’ appointment of the ECP members.
In a statement, it said that despite the fact that it was known that the four members would retire on June 12, neither the prime minister had initiated the process of consultation with the leader of the opposition in the National Assembly nor the speaker constituted the parliamentary committee for the appointments in time.