PPP chairman reiterates demand of holding next general elections within 90 days

 

Reacting to former president Asif Ali Zardari’s statement on general elections, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari on Saturday said he was bound by his father’s advice over domestic affairs, but not over political decisions.

Zardari, the president of Pakistan Peoples Party Parliamentarians (PPPP) and co-chairman of PPP, had vetoed his party’s consistent stance in favour of conducting elections within 90 days earlier in the day. The former president of Pakistan stated that ‘completing delimitation exercise was necessary before holding polls.’

In a statement, the PPP leader maintained that the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) was bound to redraw the boundaries of all constituencies after a fresh and updated census. “The ECP would conduct elections as per the Constitution, and my party has full confidence in the chief election commissioner and all ECP members,” he said.

He said the country and its economy were above everything else and everyone should “put economy over politics as it is the need of the hour”.

 

 

Reacting to his father’s statement, Bilawal while addressing the media said that Zardari should be asked what the meaning of his statement is. In a meeting of the party’s central executive committee, he said, all the legal experts of the party told us that according to the Constitution, elections should be held within 90 days.

“I am bound to obey Asif Zardari in matters of the house, but as far as politics, Constitution and party policies are concerned, I am bound to follow the decisions of my workers and the central executive committee of the party,” he maintained.

Bilawal said that the last CEC meeting had decided to contact the election commission over the issue, adding that a delegation of Pakistan Peoples Party has contacted the ECP and put their objections before them.

Zardari’s contrasting statement came a day after his son Bilawal, the former foreign minister, showed some flexibility in his earlier stance of seeking polls within 90 days.

Bilawal and the PPP leadership had previously moved the courts and the interim government to hold polls within 90 days. However, on Friday, Bilawal suggested extending the exercise to 120 days if not possible within the 90-day constitutional timeframe.

As opposed to the PPP, the PMLN leadership appears to be fine with polls taking place in January or February next year.

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