ISLAMABAD: The National Database Registration Authority (NADRA), under supervision of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), on Thursday completed the registration of printed draft electoral rolls of around 81 million eligible voters as part of its efforts to make the electoral process transparent and credible.
The draft electoral rolls were then transported to district election offices, said NADRA Deputy Chairman Tariq Malik. Malik told The Express Tribune that the ECP initiated project was accomplished in close cooperation with the commission to prepare voters’ lists by end of this month. “The Computerised National Identity Card (CNICs) has been made mandatory to register votes in light of legislation by the parliament,” he said. “NADRA registered 93 per cent of the adult population by issuing 86.6 million CNICs.”
Malik went on to brief the media saying that NADRA was in contact with the Election Commission of Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan to complete the additional registration of around six million voters.
The ECP and NADRA will verify the information regarding the particulars of the eligible voters, a senior ECP official told The Express Tribune. The commission will launch the door- to-door enumeration and registration by hiring more than 200,000 teachers, he added.
“ECP will kick off the door-to-door verification exercise by August 22, 2011.”
Talking to The Express Tribune, Tariq Malik said the printed draft electoral rolls of 136 districts was achievable through an extensive analysis of Final Electoral Rolls of 2008 (FER-2008) and after the application of 139,861 census block codes conducted by Pakistan Census Organisation, he added. Around 44 million verified voters out of 81 million voters were registered in FER-2008, according to NADRA statistics. “Over 37 million were unverified voters without identity cards,” Malik said, adding that over 36 million new voters with valid CNICs have been added in the draft electoral rolls.
NADRA and ECP have jointly urged citizens to register themselves as voters and furthermore inform the staff conducting the door-to-door verification to verify if they have already been registered.
“It’s an opportunity for all--women, eunuchs, minorities, poor, rich, young and senior citizens to register themselves,” Malik added.
NADRA’s 800 data acquisition units, including 220 mobile registration vans and offices countrywide, have been directed to work with the staff of the district election and to help citizens without CNICs to apply for one during the door-to-door verification exercise. NADRA intends to reach out unregistered voters and illustrate the disenfranchisement they face when they don’t have a CNIC.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 19th, 2011.