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Balochistan MPA disqualified over Afghan nationality

Ikram JunaidiNovember 16, 2018

TwitteTwitAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Thursday disqualified a member of the Balochistan Assembly, Ahmed Ali Kohzad, for having Afghan nationality.

The commission also ordered re-polling in the provincial assembly’s constituency PB-26 (Quetta) after declaring the election of Mr Kohzad null and void.

Mr Kohzad, who belongs to the Hazara Democratic Party, had received 5,117 votes in the July 25 polls. Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal’s candidate Wali Mohammad was the runner-up as he secured 3,242 votes.

The case was heard by two members of the ECP — Sindh member Abdul Ghaffar Soomro and Punjab member Altaf Ibrahim Qureshi — in the presence of the two candidates’ lawyers.

ARTICLE CONTINUES AFTER AD

Mr Soomro said that according to the report, Mr Kohzad was an Afghan national. He said the election on the PB-26 seat had been declared null and void.

Mr Qureshi said that the writ petition was filed in the Balochistan High Court by runner-up candidate Wali Mohammad against Mr Kohzad’s election in which it was alleged that the winner was an Afghan national.

It is worth mentioning that Mr Kohzad had also challenged in the BHC the National Database and Registration Authority’s (Nadra) decision of blocking his computerised national identity card.

However, in an earlier hearing, the Quetta deputy commissioner submitted a report to the court, claiming that Mr Kohzad was an Afghan national.

Wali Mohammad’s lawyer said that the BHC had already issued notices to the parties involved in the case. He requested that the runner-up be declared the winner.

The ECP, however, rejected his request by observing that how a runner-up could be imposed on those who did not cast their vote in his favour.

Moreover, there is no provision in the law for declaring a runner-up winner after the elected candidate is disqualified.

In August, police had reportedly requested a court to issue arrest warrants for Mr Kohzad for being allegedly involved in a murder case. It was, however, later found that Mr Kohzad had been mistakenly nominated in the case.

Published in Dawn, November 16th, 201



https://www.dawn.com/news/1445886

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