Minister Ahsan Iqbal rules out general elections before August 2023:
Minister Ahsan Iqbal rules out general elections before August 2023
Iqbal, who is a close aide to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, said that the government is focusing on completing its five-year term and that holding elections before that would be premature.
He added that the government is committed to holding free and fair elections and that all political parties need to work together to ensure this happens.
Iqbal’s comments come amid speculation that the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) party is planning to call early elections. However, Iqbal’s remarks suggest that the party is not considering this option at present.
ISLAMABAD: Minister for Planning, Development, and Special Initiatives Ahsan Iqbal ruled out the possibility of holding general elections before August 2023.
He stated this in response to PTI Chairman Imran Khan’s announcement that his party and allies would quit assemblies.
“Regarding elections, even PTI knows that early elections aren’t possible as it will take 6-8 months to complete floods rehabilitation works in Balochistan and Sindh— the provinces,” Ahsan Iqbal said.
Federal Minister stated this in a TV channel’s program “Naya Pakistan”.
He said amid all the destruction, it would be difficult to hold early elections because this will not be a mere election of a district in Mianwali — home place of Imran Khan.
Iqbal pointed out that catastrophic floods across Pakistan left one-third of the country under water, destroyed around two million homes and business premises, washed away 7,000 kilometers (4,500 miles) of roads, and collapsed 500 bridges — while water is still stagnant in several parts of the country.
Minister said that in March or April 2023, the results of the new census will be released.
In case the new census is announced, the Election Commission of Pakistan will take four to five months for delimitation for the next elections in August.