ECP Throws NA-15 Race Wide Open | The World Echo
The Election Commission of Pakistan has suspended action on Form 47 issued by the returning officer of Mansehra’s NA-15 constituency about unofficial election results, said Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl candidate Mufti Kifayatullah on Tuesday.

Uncertainty shrouds the hotly contested NA-15 Mansehra/Torghar constituency in Pakistan, as the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has suspended the unofficial results declared by polling officials. This move comes amidst allegations of irregularities and discrepancies, throwing the outcome of the race into question and raising concerns about transparency.

According to initial, unofficial tallies, former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif of the PML-N party was trailing behind his main rival, Umaima Chaudhry of the PTI, by around 80,000 votes. However, the ECP's decision to suspend these results casts a shadow over the entire process, fueling accusations of manipulation and mismanagement.

Several factors contributed to the ECP's action:

  • Missing Form 14: ECP officials point to the "unavailability" of Form 14, a crucial document that verifies the final vote count at each polling station. Its absence raises serious concerns about the integrity of the results.
  • Discrepancies in vote count: Discrepancies have been reported between the number of votes cast and the number of registered voters in certain polling stations. These discrepancies require further investigation.
  • Allegations of irregularities: Both parties have levelled accusations of rigging and manipulation against each other, highlighting the need for a thorough investigation to ensure transparency.

The ECP's decision has drawn mixed reactions. PML-N supporters have expressed outrage, calling it a blatant attempt to steal the election. PTI supporters, on the other hand, have welcomed the move, seeing it as a step towards ensuring fair and transparent results.

However, the suspension of results also raises concerns about the potential for delays and legal challenges. Both parties are likely to contest the ECP's decision, potentially leading to protracted legal battles that could further delay the final outcome.

This situation highlights the need for a robust and transparent electoral process in Pakistan. Strengthening institutions like the ECP, ensuring the availability of crucial documents, and addressing allegations of irregularities are crucial to restoring public trust in elections. Until the ECP completes its investigation and announces the final outcome, the NA-15 race remains mired in uncertainty, leaving both parties and the public waiting anxiously for a credible resolution.

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