President Dr Arif Alvi has on Saturday signed the Elections (Amendment) Ordinance 2021 for Senate elections to be held via an “open and identifiable ballot”.
The Ordinance will be effective with immediate effect subject to the interpretation of the Supreme Court on Presidential reference already sub-judice in the apex court.
The amendment has been introduced in section 33, 86 and 122 of the Election Act 2017.
Under the new ordinance, the election for Senate will be held on the open ballot.
“Provided that in case the Supreme Court of Pakistan gives an opinion in Reference No. 1 of 2021 filed under Article 186 of the Constitution, that elections for the members of the Senate do not fall within the purview of Article 226 of the Constitution, the poll for elections for members of the Senate to be held in March 2021 and thereafter shall be conducted by the Commission through the open and identifiable ballot,” reads the Ordinance.
According to Section 226 of the Constitution: “All elections under the Constitution, other than those of the Prime Minister and the Chief Minister, shall be by secret ballot”.
President Dr. Arif Alvi signs the Elections (Amendment) Ordinance 2021. pic.twitter.com/Vx0md3BiKy
— The President of Pakistan (@PresOfPakistan) February 6, 2021
Furthermore, the Ordinance states that after the Senate polls, if the head of a political party wishes to see the ballot cast by any member of his party, the Election Commission of Pakistan shall show them the same.