President Arif Alvi refuses to assent to the Election Amendment Bill

ISLAMABAD: President Dr Arif Alvi has once again refused to sign the Election Amendment Bill, as he believes the law is “regressive” and urged Parliament to consider the use of technology in elections. did.

A statement issued by the President’s Secretariat on Sunday said Dr Alvi “has not signed the bill, despite the fact that the constitution he abides by will make it a law”.

Referring to Article 75(2) of the Constitution, President Alvi said it was “very painful” for him not to sign the bill passed by Majlis Shura as head of state. He also listed his reasons for “pedigree”.

The President noted in his argument that in addition to laws being regressive, he firmly believes that technology, especially electronic voting machines when used judiciously, provide solutions that are our “perpetually unsustainable” and challenging Reduces the impact of confusion, discord and accusations in elections. Processes.

President Alvi said, “Technology can also improve transparency, make elections inclusive of our overseas Pakistanis’ vote, build confidence and reduce polarization so that ultimately our elusive vision of free and fair elections is dreams can be achieved.”

In addition, the President also said that he wants “Pakistan to leap into the world of tomorrow, to solve today’s problems not only through the lens and experiences of tomorrow but through new and better scientific approaches, Or even to ‘be born’ today”.

The head of state also acknowledged that this can only happen with confidence-building measures and wider stakeholder participation in the corridor.

“Why this was not done and why it was not clear to Rai and the decision-makers will remain an enigma for him,” Alvi said.

“The present and future governments and parliaments will have two choices, whether to allow the past to drag Pakistan down or allow the past and today’s technologies to propel us into the bright, progressive and dynamic future of Pakistan, which is ours. Used to be. Dream,” said the president.

He also observed that “many such decisions” would challenge the country in the future, and that history has shown that countries that make the right decisions ‘rise up’, and those that do not, lose opportunities that would have cost them their pride. obstruct the way.

On 9 June, a joint session of Parliament passed the Elections (Amendment) Bill, 2022 and the National Accountability (Amendment) Bill, 2022, which were returned by President Arif Alvi.

The Election Amendment Bill was seeking to do away with the use of Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) in elections, while the NAB Bill, along with other changes, has created a post-retirement process for its Speaker.

Law Minister Azam Nazir Tarar introduced both bills, which were returned by the President to Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif because he was “not informed” of the legislative proposal under Article 46 before it was introduced.

But after the approval of the joint sitting, the bills were once again sent to the President for his assent.

The 10-day deadline for approving the bill ends today. The future of the NAB law is not yet clear but the election bill has been rejected by the President.

If the President had not returned the bill within 10 days, his assent would have been deemed to have been given.