ISLAMABAD: Registered overseas Pakistanis would be able to cast their vote in bye-elections in 37 constituencies on October 14. Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) had extended the date for registration of overseas Pakistanis from September 15 to September 17 for exercising their right of casting vote in bye-elections.
According to an official of ECP, all registered overseas Pakistanis voters would have the right of casting vote in bye-election through I-Voting system.
He said that a letter had been written to the Secretary Ministry of Foreign Affairs to direct the Pakistani missions abroad to educate overseas Pakistanis regarding registration process and right of their vote in bye-elections in their respective constituencies
The ECP will deliver stipulated time voting passport to overseas Pakistanis to avail the opportunity of I-Voting for casting their vote in bye-election being held in 37 constituencies on October 14, he said.
The official added the commission will generate voting passport system for registered overseas Pakistanis on October 14 and all eligible voters can cast their vote during Pakistan Standard Time from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm on polling day.
All registered overseas Pakistanis voters will have right of casting vote in bye-election through I-Voting system, he stated. He said that for eligibility of registration and casting their votes, overseas Pakistanis need to have machine-readable passport (MRP), National Identity Card for Overseas Pakistanis (NICOP) and their valid email address.
He said through ECP’s special software, the overseas Pakistanis will be able to cast their vote by using their email.
He added a specific website has been developed jointly by ECP and NADRA for awareness and other aspects to encourage overseas Pakistanis to register for I-Voting with instruction in English and Urdu.
The commission through its official website has been trying to create awareness in overseas Pakistanis about I-Voting system and process of registration and casting vote on bye-election polling day. He said that I-Voting is a pilot project and after use of this system, the commission will compile and submit a report with the Parliament for further legislation.
He appealed the overseas Pakistanis to play a role for the success of this pilot project as future legislation on the matter is based on the success of this process. Around one million overseas Pakistanis have touched this system and expressed the hope that a large number of overseas Pakistan will avail this opportunity, he further added.
He said that in this regard, the commission has started educating the Pakistanis living abroad. He made it clear that there is no requirement of any percentage for this system but actually the foolproof voting system is important for the commission. He added efforts are being made to make this system more foolproof.
The general elections were held under Election Act 2017 and this pilot project is being exercised under the same Act.