ISLAMABAD: The Senate on Friday passed the Election Act Amendment Bill 2022 and the National Accountability Ordinance Amendment Bill 2022 by a majority vote, reversing the use of electronic voting machines, limiting the powers of the National Accountability Bureau, and curtailing the powers of the NAB, despite opposition lawmakers’ protests reported by ARY News.
Senator Azam Nazeer Tarar, the Law Minister, submitted the measures to the House for the vote, while PTI Parliamentary Leader Shahzad Waseem demanded that they be forwarded to the appropriate standing committees for further consideration.
However, the Senate Chairman put them on the table for voting, and they passed with a majority vote in the Upper House.
The National Assembly passed amendments to the National Accountability Ordinance 1999 on Thursday to limit the National Accountability Bureau’s (NAB) authority.
The bill was introduced by Law Minister Azam Nazeer Tarar, who stated that the accountability Ordinance has been modified many times to restrict the authority of the accountability bureau.
He said that following the new amendments, no arrests may be made until the investigation process was completed, the suspect would have the ability to obtain bail, and the 90-day remand would be removed.
National Assembly reverses EVM use, voting rights for overseas Pakistanis
Similarly, the Election Act Amendment Bill 2022 passed the National Assembly yesterday, reversing the PTI-led government’s decision to grant overseas Pakistanis voting rights and deploy electronic voting machines in future elections.
After the passage of the bill, the overseas Pakistanis would not be able to cast their vote from abroad however they could cast their votes while residing in Pakistan.
Furthermore, it was requested that reserved seats for the Pakistani diaspora be implemented, and the matter was sent to a standing committee for a final decision.
Speaking regarding the use of Electronic Voting Machines in the next general elections, Azam Nazeer Tarar said: “We are not against the use of technology, but we have concerns about misuse of technology as Results Transmission System (RTS) had failed in last general elections to favor a particular political party.”
He went on to say that the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) had also expressed its inability to hold elections through I-Voting and EVMs in a short time.