PESHAWAR: The Election Commission of Pakistan on Monday announced schedule for the filling of two Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly seats reserved for women from tribal merged districts and allocated to the PTI and Balochistan Awami Party.

The nominees will file papers from Aug 23 to Aug 26.

The commission issued a notification asking the two parties to produce priority lists of candidates until Aug 26. It said the two reserved seats would be filled in line with those lists.

According to the notification, names of the nominated candidates will be made public on Aug 27, while the scrutiny of nomination papers will take place on Sept 2.

The commission has fixed Sept 6 as the last date to file appeals against decisions of the returning officer, while an appellate tribunal will decide those appeals until Sept 10 after which the revised list of candidates will be made public on Sept 11.

The last date to withdraw nomination papers is Sept 12, while the final list of candidates will be released thereafter.

PTI, BAP nominees entitled to file nomination

The ECP announced that only the women named in priority list by the two parties and registered as voters in electoral rolls of ex-Fata were eligible to file nomination papers.

Provincial election commissioner Pir Maqbool Ahmad is the returning officer for the exercise.

The commission had notified early this month Naeema Kishwar Khan of the Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl and Anita Mehsud of the PTI as elected members on two of the four seats reserved for women in the first ever provincial assembly polls in the erstwhile Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata).

Under Article 103 (3) sub-clause C of the Constitution, the members to fill seats reserved for women and non-Muslims, which are allocated to a province, shall be elected through the proportional representation system of political parties’ lists of candidates on the basis of total number of general seats won by each political party from the province concerned.

Under that article, the commission had allocated two reserved seats to the PTI and on each to JUI-F and BAP.

However, the two seats had remained vacant as the PTI had given only the name of Anita Mehsud in its priority list, whereas the BAP didn’t produce any priority list.

Of the 16 general seats for which polling was held on July 20, the independent candidates had won six seats, PTI five, JUI-F three, and Jamaat-i-Islami and Awami National Party one each.

However, two independent MPAs-elect joined the PTI, whereas three independents, in a surprising move, joined the BAP, which had no presence in the province’s politics.

After independent candidates joined it, the PTI was entitled to get two seats reserved for women, while JUI-F and BAP got one seat each. The single seat reserved for non-Muslims went to the PTI, whose nominee Wilson Wazir was declared successful.

Now, out of the total 21 seats reserved for ex-Fata, PTI has 10, JUI-F and BAP four each, and JI and ANP one each, while one seat is held by an independent MPA, Mir Kalam Khan, who is affiliated with the Pashtun Tahafuz Movement.

Published in Dawn, August 20th, 2019