Islamabad, March 17, 2021: Addressing the government’s announcement of going to court to initiate contempt proceedings against the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) and members of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) if they do not resign from their offices, PPP Parliamentary Leader in the Senate, Senator Sherry Rehman said, “This is an unprecedented and inexplicable attack on the ECP’s authority and independence. It is absurd that just because an independent and constitutional body is not following the PM’s dictation, he wants them to resign”.
“Expecting an autonomous institution to obey the government’s whims is not how things work in even hybrid democracies. If there was any conflict, the government should have been taken it up constitutionally. But pressurizing and forcing the CEC and ECP reflects the extreme environment of unstable and unsustainable authoritarianism this government,” she added.
Rehman asked, “Where is Tabahi Sarkar taking Pakistan with all these attacks on our constitutional institutions? Taking Pakistan into a constitutional crisis for self-gain is selfish and disastrous for our country’s constitutional institutions, our democratic fundamentals and self image ”.
“How can this government say that the ECP did not hold free and transparent elections after what happened in Daska? They are only creating a dangerous level of instability in the country with such controversies,” she said.
Rehman said, “What this government does not realise is that this smear campaign against ECP is only damaging their own credibility and is exposing their insecurities. All democratic parties are with the ECP and we will not let this government undermine the democratic process of our country.”
Vice President PPPP Senator Sherry Rehman concluded by saying that, “It is shocking how the premier is targeting a state institution when the results don’t please them. This only goes out to show his intolerance of an independent institution when it does not bend to his whim”.