Islamabad, The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has outlined specific Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for national and domestic observers and media personnel in preparation for the General Elections 2024. These SOPs are designed to facilitate the observation and reporting of the electoral process while ensuring compliance with legal provisions and maintaining the integrity of the elections.
According to Election Commission of Pakistan, Section 238 of the Elections Act 2017 allows for the accreditation of domestic and international election observation organizations to access polling stations and the election process, subject to certain conditions. Observers are required to be accredited by the Commission, not affiliated with any political party, and must provide full particulars and documents, including security clearance from the government.
The ECP’s “Open Door Policy” for media and observers is contingent upon the fulfillment of these codal formalities and adherence to the established Code of Conduct. Given the large number of observers expected for the upcoming General Elections, the ECP will issue Accreditation Cards, which are necessary for observers to access polling stations and observe the polling process and consolidation of results.
The SOPs for the upcoming General Elections include procedures for applying for Accreditation Cards, providing detailed information about observers, adherence to the Code of Conduct, and prominently displaying Accreditation Cards. The ECP reserves the right to cancel or decline requests for Accreditation Cards. Observers are also encouraged to use the ECP Digital Information Toolkit and share their findings and recommendations with the ECP after the electoral process.
These measures by the ECP aim to ensure a transparent, fair, and orderly conduct of the General Elections 2024, with active participation and observation by national and domestic entities.