No intention of resigning, says chief election commissioner

Published April 24, 2022
This image shows Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikander Sultan Raja. — DawnNewsTV
This image shows Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikander Sultan Raja. — DawnNewsTV

Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikander Sultan Raja has said that he has no intention of tendering his resignation, and will continue to work in the "best interests of the country".

Raja's statement comes a day after PTI Chairman Imran Khan called for his resignation, saying the party believed him to be "biased". Addressing a press conference at his Bani Gala residence, Imran had said the PTI did not trust the CEC, alleging all his decisions were against the party.

Speaking to DawnNews on Saturday night, Raja rejected Imran's demand for his resignation. "I have no intention of tendering my resignation," he said, adding that there was no valid reason to "think like that".

"I am working in the best interests of the country and shall continue to do so," he added.

Last week, Imran had claimed that Raja's name for the CEC office was suggested by the establishment.

Speaking to journalists about a range of issues at an informal meeting at his Bani Gala residence, the former prime minister alleged that Raja's name was proposed by the establishment after a deadlock between the then government and the opposition, suggesting the chief election commissioner should be appointed through an independent body.

Imran had stated that the PTI would file a reference against the CEC, as the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) had displayed “incompetence” by not completing the delimitation of constituencies on time, which delayed early elections.

At a rally held in Lahore on Thursday, the PTI chairman had reiterated allegations of Raja being biased, stating that his leanings were so obvious that "he should be given a PML-N office position".

Meanwhile, the PML-N claimed that Imran was targeting the CEC through a fake narrative ahead of the ECP's verdict in the PTI’s foreign funding case.

Raja, who was appointed in January 2020, is the first-ever ex-bureaucrat to be heading the country’s apex electoral body.

The decision was made by a 12-member bipartisan parliamentary panel after several months of back and forth about key appointments to the ECP, which was later forwarded to the prime minister for his approval.

PTI leader Shireen Mazari, who was the human rights minister at the time and heading the parliamentary body, had welcomed the decision.

"Parliamentarians have taken a decision, which was their responsibility. Parliamentary matters should be decided by parliament,” Mazari had said while announcing the end of a deadlock that had kept the ECP dysfunctional for at least one-and-a-half months.

Opinion

Editorial

Security concerns
23 Jul, 2024

Security concerns

All stakeholders want what is best for the country and its people; their differing approaches shouldn’t be viewed with such suspicion all the time.
Frankfurt vandalism
23 Jul, 2024

Frankfurt vandalism

THE state needs to seek serious answers from the German authorities regarding the July 20 mob attack targeting...
Stressed cotton economy
23 Jul, 2024

Stressed cotton economy

DECREASING cotton production should be a worry for the government because of its socioeconomic implications. Early...
Population calamity
Updated 22 Jul, 2024

Population calamity

Pakistan can also control its growth rate by following the examples of its peers and implementing functional family planning programmes and campaigns.
Blow to occupation
22 Jul, 2024

Blow to occupation

THE International Court of Justice has delivered a legal blow to the decades-old Israeli occupation of Palestinian...
Seeking Priya Kumari
22 Jul, 2024

Seeking Priya Kumari

PRIYA Kumari — the minor girl who vanished on Ashura in 2021 while serving water at a sabeel in Sukkur district ...