Presidential Ordinance issued for holding Senate elections by open ballot
ISLAMABAD: The President has issued an ordinance to hold Senate elections through open ballot.
According to details, Election Amendment Ordinance 2021 has been issued. President Dr. Arif Alvi has signed the proposed ordinance of the Cabinet to hold the Senate elections by open ballot. Section 122 of the Election Act 2017 has been amended under the Ordinance. This ordinance will come into force immediately throughout the country.
Under the ordinance, the party chief will be able to request a vote. The Election Commission will be bound to vote for the party chief or his representative. However, the ordinance is subject to the Supreme Court’s opinion on the reference filed in the Senate elections. The ordinance has been approved. The new ordinance has been drafted by Attorney General Khalid Javed.
According to sources, the Prime Minister was briefed regarding the Senate elections that the Senate election schedule will be released on February 11, while the Senate election case is still pending in the Supreme Court.
If the Supreme Court rules in favor of the government after February 11, then elections will not be held through open ballot. At that time, elections will be held through secret ballot.
Sources said that in view of this situation, it was decided to seek the approval of the Cabinet through a circular summary of the ordinance. As the Supreme Court also ruled in favor of the government, we will not be able to do so at this time.
On the other hand, the government had also introduced the 26th amendment in the National Assembly in this regard, but due to strong opposition and commotion in the House, it could not be acted upon.
Now that the government has approached the Supreme Court on the issue of holding Senate elections through open ballot, the move by the government could be a political ploy if the issue of constitutional amendment is also under discussion in the National Assembly.