LAHORE: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) claims to have registered 4.5 million new female voters mostly from areas where societal values have been barring womenfolk from coming to the fore.
“We have been launching awareness campaigns in Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s tribal districts for the last two years to motivate women to come out to use their right to franchise. The drive has proved a success as 4.5m new female voters have so far been registered, mostly from these areas,” ECP additional director general Nadeem Qasim told Dawn here on Monday.
He said those districts were selected for launching the drive where difference between male and female voters was more than 10 per cent. “Despite being 49 per cent of the population, the number of registered women voters is 12.5m less than men in a total of 110m registered voters,” he regretted.
Sharing the method employed to motivate the womenfolk, the ADG said that the National Database and Registration Authority’s mobile vans were used to offer free national identity card service and Friday was fixed as the women-specific day for making their CNIC’s. “This helped the ECP to register them as voters.”
ECP ensured issuance of free ID cards to women
Earlier, local media men were briefed about the third five-year (2019-23) strategic plan of the ECP at a consultation here on Monday.
The participants were told that the post-election 2018 review report of the ECP had not so far been laid before any of the five elected houses — the National Assembly and four provincial houses — though the job had to be done within 60 days of the submission of the report as per law.
According to ECP sources, the report was submitted to the federal and provincial governments in March last year but it was apparently stuck in meetings of standing committees.
The sitting was told that the strategic plan has been based on 212 recommendations collected through consultations with over 5,000 individuals and entities, including political parties, NGOs and CSOs related with various democratic and election projects.
The recommendations were, however, not shared with the media.