Quetta – Final phase of local body elections took place yesterday in Balochistan. Three ruling parties National Party (NP), Pashtoonkhwa Milli Awami Party (PKMAP) and PML-N won elections in most districts. Balochistan government is being praised for conducting local body elections earlier than other provinces.
“Local body elections are far from fair and free and government machinery was used to facilitate the victory of all three parties in government,” said Rashid Khan Nasir while talking to The Balochistan Point. He is a leader of Awami National Party (ANP) and convener of All Parties Democratic alliance (APDA), a seven party alliance for local body elections against government parties.
Mr. Nasir discussed in detail about how government used unfair tactics to win elections. “First phase of elections took place in December 2013 and last in January 2015; the delay was meant to facilities the victory of government parties.” He further added, “All phases of local body elections should have been completed within 2 months, maximum.”
Commenting on the undemocratic attitude of ruling coalition, He said “In all those districts where government parties could not win, they remained absent to create a lack of quorum issue and postpone the election.” He continued “APDA remained present even in those districts where we are in minority.”
When asked that why APDA failed to prove its majority in Quetta Metropolitan corporation, He defended APDA by saying that they contested elections against all odds. It must be noted that APDA won the seat of District Chairman of Quetta which was termed as a huge victory by Mr. Nasir.
“APDA won the seat of District Chairman without support of Chief Minister, Prime minister or governor like our opponents had,” explained APDA convener.
Mr. Nasir alleged that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and the provincial bureaucracy used their support to snatch the position of Mayor of Quetta from APDA. In order to support his claim he mentioned the meeting held in Islamabad, about local body elections, chaired by Nawaz Sharif and attended by top leadership of NP, PKMAP and PML-N Balochistan.
When asked by The Balochistan Point that what APDA will do if government didn’t cooperate with government, He replied “Government doesn’t cooperate with poor people of Balochistan and we don’t expect it to cooperate with us in any one.” He threatened that APDA will seek the help of court if any hurdles were created for District Chairman-elect of Quetta.
Mr. Nasir maintained that APDA will continue to exist and it will not wind-up after Local body elections.
Local body elections are far from over as elections will take place in all those districts where quorum was incomplete yesterday. This means that it would take another month to complete the transfer of power to local bodies.
Published in The Balochistan Point on January 29, 2015