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29 February 2024

Pakistani election official says it may be "impossible" to hold polls on January 8

By Agencies


An election official said Tuesday “it looks impossible” for Pakistan to hold elections as scheduled on January 8 in the wake of the violence that followed the assassination of opposition leader Benazir Bhutto.

However, a final decision will not be made until Wednesday, after the commission consults all political parties, commission spokesman Kanwar Dilshad said.

“After consulting representatives of the political parties, we will make any final decision about the date of polls tomorrow,” Dilshad said Tuesday.

Rioters angry at Bhutto’s slaying had burned 10 of election offices in Bhutto’s Sindh province, destroying voter rolls and the ballot boxes inside. The violence also disrupted the printing of ballots, the commission said.

“We have received reports from the provincial governments and provincial election commissioners,” he said. “The Sindh government has especially said that the law and order situation is not conducive for the elections to be held on January 8.”

Though there has been strong international pressure to hold the poll as scheduled, Dilshad said “it looks impossible”. (AP)