ISLAMABAD: Printing of ballot papers for the upcoming general election in Gilgit-Baltistan will be completed in a week, Managing Director of Printing Corporation of Pakistan (PCP) Dr Nadeem Malik said whilst assuring the region’s Chief Election Commissioner Raja Shahbaz Khan during his visit to the corporation.
Mr Khan asked the establishment division and capital police to provide foolproof security during printing of ballot papers. The commission is committed towards holding transparent, fair and impartial elections for which arrangements have been made, he said, adding: “Conduct of exemplary polls is our foremost priority.”
The 2020 GB Assembly election is scheduled to be held on Nov 15, 2020 in 24 constituencies, each electing one member to the GB Legislative Assembly.
As many as 330 candidates are in the run, either representing one of the 14 officially registered and recognised political parties of the region or as independents; GB has 24 constituencies and its assembly has 33 seats.
Besides the 24 general seats, six are reserved for women and three for technocrats. The area has a population of about 1.3 million and a total of 745,361 registered voters, of which roughly half or 339,992 are women.
This will be the region’s third election since GB was given the power to rule itself in 2009 through its assembly.
The PPP won the first election in 2009, followed by PML-N in 2015; the latter completed its term on Jun 23, 2020 and the legislative assembly wrapped up after five years in power. Mir Afzal was sworn in as caretaker chief minister for GB on Jun 24.
The elections on the 24 general seats of the GB Legislative Assembly were earlier scheduled to be held on Aug 18 but were later postponed due to spread of Covid-19.
Published in Dawn, November 3rd, 2020