ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Tuesday took notice of horse-trading allegations levelled against parliamentarians in the March 3 Senate elections.
In what appears to be a belated move, the ECP has summoned several politicians who have been appearing in the media with allegations of horse-trading. The election body has asked them to submit proofs if they have any to substantiate their claims.
They have been summoned by the commission on March 14 to initiate an investigation into the claims so that action can be taken against those involved.
Allegations of horse-trading in Senate polls had been doing the rounds even before the Senate polls were held on March 3.
Earlier in the day, Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) leader Dr Farooq Sattar had stated that he would approach the apex court and the ECP over the alleged horse-trading and coercion in the Senate elections. Sattar claimed that loyalties of 15 MPAs of the MQM-P shifted due to “threats and bribes”.
On Monday, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan had claimed that some K-P Assembly members affiliated with his party had sold votes in the Senate elections. Terming this ‘disappointing’, he said a committee had been constituted to probe the matter and strict action would be taken against such individuals.
Senate 'horse-trading' claims stoke tension among PTI ranks
He said many lawmakers turned down offers amounting to Rs40 million. “I salute those who chose not to do so. Those who traded votes for money will be dealt with strictly,” he had said.
Those who have been sent notices include Imran Khan, Dr Farooq Sattar, Amir Muqam, Marriyum Aurangzeb, Shahab Uddin Khan, Uzma Bukhari and Raza Haroon.
Former Supreme Court chief justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry has also approached the top court with plea to cancel the Senate polls results.