Political Parties Instructed by ECP not to Criticize Pakistan Army and Judiciary while Campaigning of Punjab Elections.
In advance of the Punjab Elections scheduled on May 14, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has released a code of conduct addressing the Election campaign after concluding consultation with the Political Parties.
Political parties were instructed by the electoral authority to refrain from criticizing the Pakistan Army and the Judiciary while campaigning. Also, political parties warned to refrain from making fun of the Election Commission.
In order to help law enforcement agencies ensure the safety and security of election materials, election officials, and polling agents on election day. No one is permitted to exert undue influence over any candidate’s decision to run or not run in the election.
Political parties, Candidates for office, Election officials, and supporters are prohibited from bribing or otherwise encouraging anyone to run for office, withdraw or retire from the race, or do any of these things.
The electoral authority requires political parties to provide at least 5% representation on general seats in any Parliament. “When selecting candidates for general seats in an assembly, the party shall provide at least 5% representation of Female Candidates, as required by Section 206 of the Act,” it says.
An election candidate must open a separate bank account to manage his campaign expenses. “All candidates shall create an exclusive account with any branch of a scheduled bank wherein any donation or subscription shall likewise be deposited,” it read.
Weapons are not permitted to show in public assemblies or processions. There will be a complete prohibition on the carriage and display of all types of weapons and firearms in public meetings and processions.
Polling day and until twenty-four hours after the consolidation of official results by the Returning Officers and official regulations in respect thereof strictly enforced. President, Prime Minister, and Ministers do not participate in political activities in the constituency.
Election campaigning will not be held within 400 meters of a voting location on election day. Political flags or banners will also be restricted inside voting places.
“On Polling Day, there shall be a complete ban on all types of campaigning, canvassing, influencing voters to vote, soliciting votes and not to vote in the election, or canvassing for a specific candidate within a 400-meter radius of a polling station,” it states.
The Punjab Provincial Assembly elections were placed on May 14, according to the Supreme Court. As a result, the Electoral Commission has already begun making preparations. Yet, the federal government has refused to accept the Supreme Court’s directions.