ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Institute of Legislative Development and Transparency (PILDAT) has termed the pre-poll process in the country ‘unfair’ in its pre-election assessment report.
In a statement released on Tuesday, the organisation said the score on pre-poll fairness perception was at 51.5 per cent on a scale of 100. The study, conducted from April 2017 to March 2018, rests findings through 11 parameters, where two parameters fell in the “highly unfair” scale.
The report cited the parameters as perception of neutrality of military towards competing political parties and candidates receiving the lowest score i.e. 33.4 per cent and perception of freedom of private media from the influence of state institutions and vested interests at 37.8 per cent.
According to the report, “unfair scale” included perception of neutrality of the state-owned media at 41.5 per cent, followed by that of accountability process led by the National Accountability Bureau, which stood at 43.1 per cent. The perception of neutrality of judiciary also fell in the scale of ‘unfair’ with a score of 45.8 per cent.
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The study found that parameters pertaining to level field provided by the Elections Commission of Pakistan received the highest scores.
“Perception of credibility of electoral rolls has received the highest score of 67.3 per cent while independence, neutrality and effectiveness of ECP received 65.3 per cent.
Meanwhile “perception of fairness and adherence to laws and rules relating to the electoral constituencies delimitation process has also received a high score of 64 per. Lack of ability of the president and governors to influence elections received score of 61.8 per cent while lack of ability of local government’s influence on elections was found at 57.8 per cent.
“The parameter on maintenance of law and order to allow political activities on a level playing field has also received a score of 57.8% that indicates that compared to the pre-electoral environment leading to 2013 General Election where parties were unable to hold public rallies, the scenario has been relatively stable leading up to General Election 2018.”