Dawn News

Fewer female voters in N. Waziristan

ISLAMABAD, Aug 2: Because of the influence and pressure exerted by extremists and some religious elements, the number of registered women voters has significantly dropped in North Waziristan Agency, whereas Kurram Agency has the highest percentage of female voters among all the tribal agencies.

According to the new computerised voter lists released recently by the election commission, there are only 10,863 women among the 156,591 registered voters in North Waziristan.

Unlike the rest of the country where the difference between the numbers of male and female voters is little, it is quite wide in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) and Frontier Regions (FRs).

Of the 1.67 million registered voters in Fata and FRs, there only 555,234, or 33.12 per cent, women.

“As the Taliban-led militancy and their allied clergies have discouraged men and elders of the area for getting their womenfolk registered not only as voters but also for getting enlisted with Nadra,” said Sajid Turi, MNA from Kurram Agency.

The situation is comparatively different in Kurram, Khyber and Bajaur agencies.

“Because of a progressive mindset, especially in upper Kurram, women are granted the rights allowed in Islam,” Mr Turi said.

Of the 249,548 registered voters in Kurram Agency, females are around 40 per cent.In Orakzai Agency, of the 121,325 registered voters there are 46,585, or 38.55 per cent, women.In Khyber Agency, of the 319,763 registered voters there are 36.38 per cent women and in Bajaur Agency they are 35.69 per cent of total 336,838 voters.

In South Waziristan, the number of women is 65,585, or 32.37 per cent, of the total 202,553 voters.

Mohmand Agency has only 55,431 women voters compared to 115,024 men.

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