ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has registered three new political parties shortly before kicking of the process of holding next general elections.
According notifications available on the ECP’s official website, the commission has notified registration of Khadmeen-i-Sindh (KS), Pakistan Kesan Labour Party (PKLP) and Tehreek-i-Ehsas Pakistan (TEP).
A notification of the ECP regarding registration of KS party said: “In pursuance of sections 208 & 209 (3) of the Elections Act, 2017, read with sub-rule (2) of rule 158 of the Election Rules, 2017, thereof, the Election Commission of Pakistan is pleased to publish for public information, the certificate containing the information with regard to conduct of intra-party elections, the names, designations and addresses of the party office bearers and the details of election result, along with copy of party notification declaring result of the election in respect of newly enlisted political party Khadmeen-i-Sindh.”
Meanwhile, in a significant development, the commission delisted a case related to confiscation of prohibited funds of the PTI. The case was earlier scheduled to be heard on Tuesday.
The commission’s media communication and outreach wing didn’t reveal reasons for the removal of the case from the cause list. No new date for hearing of the case has been announced so far.
In March this year the ECP, in its detailed judgement, had explained reasons for rejecting the PTI’s application for cross-examination of witnesses, including bank officials concerned, declaring that the process for confiscation of prohibited funds received by the party has started.
While giving its verdict on the case, the ECP had said in Aug 2022: “PTI Pakistan, through fundraising campaigns by PTI USA LLC-6160 and PTI USA LLC-5975, was a recipient of donations from 34 foreign nationals and 351 foreign-based companies. Collection of donations and contributions from foreign nationals and companies are hit by prohibition and in violation of Pakistani laws.”
The ECP said the party had only owned up to eight accounts before the commission and declared 13 accounts to be unknown. “The data obtained from the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) reveals that all the 13 accounts disowned by the PTI were opened and operated by senior PTI management and leadership at [a] central and provincial level.”
The commission noted that the party had failed to mention three accounts which were also being operated by the party’s senior leadership. Non-disclosure and concealment of 16 bank accounts by the PTI is a “serious lapse” on part of the PTI leadership and in violation of Article 17(3) of the Constitution, it said.
Article 17(3) says: “Every political party shall account for the source of its funds in accordance with the law.”