ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has prohibited political parties and their candidates from launching personal attacks against their opponents, Express News reported Friday.
With election campaign in full swing and parties holding rallies, candidates were seen criticising each other and often resorting to name-calling and rhetoric that could be construed as slander.
Earlier, President Asif Ali Zardari’s spokesperson Farhat Ullah Babar had written a letter to ECP stating that parties, specifically Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), had been making personal attacks on the president and requested the commission to take action against them.
Although the letter was not mentioned, in this context, the ECP issued a directive forbidding parties and candidates from personal attacks and warned that action will be taken against anyone who violates this rule.
“Parties and candidates shall refrain from criticism of any aspect of private life, not connected with the public activities of the leaders or workers of other parties. Criticism based on unverified allegations and distortion of facts shall be avoided” ECP spokesman quoted from a paragraph from code of conduct for political parties.
Under the code of conduct issued by the ECP the candidates might criticize other political parties and opponent candidates on the basis of their policies and programmes, past record and work.
“The political parties, contesting candidates and their supporters shall refrain from deliberate dissemination of false and malicious information and shall not indulge in forgeries and disinformation to defame other political parties/leaders. The use of abusive language against the leaders and candidates shall be avoided at all costs” the media office said.
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