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Pakistan opposition leaders oppose ordinance to hold Senate elections via show of hands

ANI | Updated: Feb 07, 2021 03:15 IST

Islamabad [Pakistan], February 7 (ANI): Leaders of the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) - the 11-party opposition alliance on Saturday opposed the government's move to hold Senate elections via a show of hands.
In a meeting between PDM chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) vice president Maryam Nawaz, it was agreed that the procedure for Senate elections can not be changed without a constitutional amendment, reported Geo News.
According to sources, Maryam Nawaz said that it will be known in the Senate election who is standing with whom, and also did not reject the option of a no-confidence motion against Prime Minister Imran Khan.
On the other hand, Rehman said that the PDM will approach the court over the matter if required.
During a press conference, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari voiced similar concerns, saying that an amendment can only be brought about through the parliament, Geo News reported.

Bilawal questioned the need to promulgate an ordinance when the matter is sub judice and vowed not to let the government "violate the sanctity" of the secret ballot in the Senate elections.
This comes after President Arif Alvi ratified a summary approved by the Federal Cabinet earlier in the day, officially paving the way for open ballot in Senate elections.
The Ordinance states that if Supreme Court finds Senate elections do not fall under Article 226 of the Constitution, an "open and identifiable ballot" will be held, Geo News reported.
Earlier, Fazlur Rehman on Friday announced that all opposition parties have decided to contest the Senate elections together and will not contest against each other's candidates.
The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) will announce the schedule for the upcoming Senate elections on February 11. (ANI)