- ECP says date extended after seeing reports on media of difficulties being faced by candidates
- The ECP says it is extending the date through powers conferred under Article 218 (3)
- ECP maintains Senate elections will be held on March 3
ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Saturday revised its schedule for the Senate polls as it extended the date for filing nomination papers for Senate candidates till February 15.
However, the ECP has not changed the date for the polling day and has maintained that the elections will be held on March 3.
The new notification says the date to file the nomination papers has been changed from February 12 till February 15.
The ECP said that it was amending the dates after seeing reports in the media that the candidates were facing difficulties in completing legal formalities to file nomination papers.
The ECP said that it was extending the date through the powers conferred to it under Article 218 (3) read with Section 128 of the Elections Act 2017.
Following the extension, the schedule of the Senate elections will be:
|Dates for filing of nomination papers||February 12-15|
|Publication of names of nominated candidates||February 16|
|Dates for scrutiny of nomination papers||February 17-18|
|Dates for filing of appeals against acceptance of rejection of nomination papers||February 19-20|
|Dates for disposal of appeals by the tribunal||February 22-23|
|Publication of revised list of candidates||February 24|
|Date for withdrawal of candidature||February 5|
|Polling day||March 3|
Many parties had called on the ECP to change the dates to file nomination of papers.
The PPP, one of the major opposition parties, had written a letter to the chief election commissioner requesting the ECP a delay in the submission of candidates forms for the upcoming Senate election over time constraints and legal issues.
PPP's Secretary-General Nayyar Hussain Bukhari said that the time allowed by the Election Commission of Pakistan for submission of forms is not enough.
The PPP said that a federal party like them needs to conduct an exercise throughout the union council levels to finalise its candidates for the Senate election.
"It involves inviting applications, scrutiny, setting up of parliamentary boards, interviewing candidates before finally awarding them tickets. As the candidates run into hundreds the exercise takes considerable time," he had said.
All parties are vying for 48 seats that will be up for grabs on March 3.
In the current election two seats for Islamabad, 11 from Punjab, 11 from Sindh, 12 from KP and 12 from Balochistan are up for grabs.