ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan on Wednesday sought within 15 days a report on the prohibited funding allegedly received by political parties.

Chief Election Commissioner Sikandar Sultan Raja issued the directives to the ECP scrutiny committee while chairing a meeting.

The scrutiny committee, initially formed back in 2019 to carry out scrutiny of the accounts and banking record of prohibited funding of the PTI, was later on tasked with conducting the same in relation to the documents of other political parties, including the PML-N and PPP.

The ECP formed the committee after conducting numerous hearings of the PTI case, filed by the party’s founding member Akbar S. Babar. Based on the committee’s findings, the commission issued an order on Aug 2 last year, holding that the party had received funds from prohibited sources.

In retaliation to the scrutiny of its records, the PTI lodged a complaint with the ECP, alleging irregularities and kickbacks in the funding of PML-N and PPP, as well as that of JUI-F.

The Wednesday’s meeting of the commission also decided that polling for three National Assembly seats — NA-108 (Faisalabad), NA-118 (Nankana Sahib) and NA-239 (Korangi) — will be held on May 28. Taking notice of the irregularities in UC-119, Hyderabad, in the May 7 by-elections, the ECP has fixed May 15 for a hearing on the matter.

Published in Dawn, May 11th, 2023

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