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Reporting Code of Conduct violations to ECP

Violations of the code of conduct for local bodies elections issued by the ECP continue with the ECP maintaining that no great`" violations have been reported to it. Speaking of reporting violations, individu-land would like to share with it's readers that we did report the violations to the ECP on Friday, Aug 5th only to be told that violations can only be reported by a political party and not a citizens' group. Individu-land has asked the ECP to put this in writing which we have so far not received. However, this, in individu-lands' opinion, is a point for reflection for civil society organizations.

As we cannot report violations to the Election Commission of Pakistan since we are not a political party, individu-land is pleased to note that at least the cyber space is open.

As the poll date nears, violations of the code of conduct continue by individuals and groups who in the same vein also reaffirm their commitment to impellent the code of conduct. Individu-land would like to draw your attention to the following incidents as reported in the national media:

The Chief Minister of Punjab announced that the government had allocated Rs 7 billion for 21 tehsils in Multan to provide safe drinking water and a proper sewerage system besides laying the foundation stone of a dental college and a burn unit worth Rs 650 million at the Nishtar Medical College and Hospital. At the end of his speech, the Honorable Minster then announced that Mr. Faisal Mukhtar would be a candidate of the ruling party for the top slot of the Multan city district government and reminded the people that Mr. Mukhtar earlier as Multan City Tehsil Nazim was instrumental in persuading him to give all this developmental attention to Multan. This report was printed in the Dawn on Monday, August 08, 2005 under ``Leaguers can't harmonize with PPP: Pervaz"

At a distance of about 640 km from Multan, at Rawalpindi the Punjab Minister for Law, Parliamentary Affairs and Local Bodies Mr. Muhammad Bashrat Raja laid the foundation stone of Rs6 crore expansion project of Adiala Road where the Punjab Minister for Communication and Works Ch. Zaheer uddin ,Rawalpindi PML President Muhammad Nasir Raja and most notably former Tehsil Nazim Hamid Nawaz Raja who is again in the run were present. In addition to announcing more developmental schemes, the Local Bodies Minister also gave Rs 10 lakh grant for the establishment of Adiala Press Club to the President of the Club with Mr. Hamid Nawaz Raja also speaking on the occasion. This was reported in The Nation on Monday, August 08, 2005 under ``Record development works carried out in Pindi: Basharat"

At Chakwal,Gen (r) Majeed Malik who is in the run for the slot of District Nazim announced that he was confident that his group would sweep the polls but that party discipline would be respected and that the ``District Nazim would be elected in consultation with the party parliamentarians" and so if the party decides to withdraw him ,he would be happy to do so. This was reported in the Daily Times on Monday, August 08, 2005 under ``Corruption in local govs irks President"

When the local bodies schedule was announced on June 30th 2005, all the local bodies were dissolved and from July 1st 2005 caretakers were appointed who were considered non partisan. It is therefore puzzling when on Sunday ,Aug 7th 2005 the Tehsil Caretaker in Fateh Jang , Mr. Malik Wajid Ali hosted a farewell reception for the former tehsil Nazim and Naib Nazim (both of whom are contesting again) and lauded their efforts for the uplift of education in the area. This was reported in the Dawn on Monday, August 08, 2005.

Clause 11 of the ECP Code of Conduct declares`` Candidates or their supporters are barred from deliberately leveling baseless and concocted accusations against their opponents which can malign them and tarnish their image and popularity." On Aug 7th 2005 at Karachi while speaking via telephone to a meeting the Leader of the Mutahida Quami Movement Mr.Altaf Hussain, according to a Dawn report, `` accused the Jamat-i-Islami of destroying the image of Islam and religion. The MQM leader appealed to the people to follow the Holy Quran and not the propaganda of the JI.The MQM chief accused the JI and other parties of the MMA of poisoning the minds of young men and preparing them for jihad in madrasshahs. "

Since individu-land cannot report the violation of the code to the ECP as we are not a political party, we hope that those who can will do so on the basis of information compiled in this mail.
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