Past election mistakes won’t be repeated: Reform panel
GARDEZ (Pajhwok): The Electoral Reform Commission, currently meeting a cross section of society in different provinces, on Monday promised past mistakes would not be repeated in future polls.
This was stated by Kawon Kakar, a member of the commission, who headed a delegation to southeastern Paktia province. The delegation addressed a gathering attended by civil society activists, tribal elders and local residents in Gardez.
Speaking on behalf of civil society groups, Ahmad Shah Ahmadzai said people had lost trust in the electoral bodies during the previous elections. He added people would not participate in future elections until essential reforms were brought to the electoral bodies.
He believed problems in elections could be mitigated if security was improved and electronic identity cards distributed. “Technical issues and mistakes did not harm the previous elections the most, but by deals on votes by a handful of individuals,” he said.
Similarly, tribal elder Janat Khan Mangal said voter cards had been distributed much beyond the voter lists in the previous polls.
“These extra cards created most of the problems in the previous elections. One person had polled more than 100 votes in the previous election,” he claimed. The elder said the authorities concerned should prevent next time bogus voter cards printed in Pakistan.
A member of the provincial council, Shakeela Mangal, said efforts should be made to ensure women fully participated in elections. “Currently many women are deprived of their right to enfranchise as their votes are polled by their men who choose their candidates.”
The Electoral Reform Commission representative, Kawon Kakar, told the gathering they would share their proposals with the higher officials and other relevant authorities.
He said the commission was trying to ensure past mistakes were not repeated in future elections. Kakar added the commission had started consultative meetings with people in provinces.
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