President Alvi returns draft electoral amendment without signature

President Alvi Returns Draft Electoral Amendment Without Signature

President'S Monsoon

President of Pakistan Dr Arif Alvi. image file

ISLAMABAD: President Dr. Arif Alvi returned the unsigned Election Bill (Amendment) 2022 after citing certain reasons and recording his observations.

The bill passed by the joint session of parliament calls for an end to the use of electronic voting machines (EVMs) and ends voting rights for Pakistanis abroad.

After the bills are approved by the joint session, they are presented to the president for his approval. If the president does not give his approval within 10 days, it will be considered given. Despite this, Alvi returned the electoral reform bill unsigned.

In a statement from the President’s Secretariat, the President said he had been pursuing the issue of Electronic Voting Machines (EVM) and Pakistanis abroad voting in Pakistan’s parliament and Supreme Court for more than a decade.

The president noted that he had not signed the bill, despite the fact that the constitution he defended would make it into law.

In this regard, he referred to Article 75(2) of the Constitution of Pakistan, which read: “When the President returns a bill to the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament), it will be reconsidered by the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament). Parliament) in joint session and, if it is again approved, with or without amendment, by the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament), by the votes of a majority of the members of both Houses present and voting, shall be considered for the purposes of the Constitution passed by both Chambers and presented to the President, and the President will give his favorable opinion within ten days, under penalty of having the opinion given”.

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He further noted that it was very painful for him as President of Pakistan not to sign a bill passed by parliament.

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In enumerating the reasons, the President said that, in addition to the regressive character of the proposed laws, he strongly believed that technology especially with EVMs when used judiciously contained many solutions that reduced the impact of confusion, discord and accusations on the ‘always broken’ processes. challenged voters.

Technology can also improve transparency, make elections inclusive with Pakistanis voting abroad, build trust and reduce polarization to finally achieve the elusive dream of free and fair elections, he added.

President Alvi said he wanted Pakistan to leap into the world of tomorrow, not to solve today’s problems just through yesterday’s lens and experiences, but through newer and better scientific approaches that were available, or even being ‘born’. today.

He said this could not happen without confidence-building measures across all corridors and broad stakeholder involvement, posing the question of why the obvious was not visible to opinion and decision-makers would remain an enigma to him.

He noted that present and future governments and parliaments would be faced with two choices, allow the past to drag Pakistan down or allow the lessons of the past and today’s technologies to propel them into Pakistan’s bright, progressive and dynamic future that it had been their dream.

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President Alvi further opined that such decisions would continue to challenge them and history has shown that those who made the right decisions ‘came up’ and those who didn’t squandered opportunities that obstructed their path to glory.

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