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PTI yet to finalise organisational structure

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ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) may have been touting its distinction of holding another intra-party election, but it has failed so far to finalise its organisational structure.

The committee set up by PTI chief Imran Khan to propose an organisational structure has yet to come up with its recommendations, PTI Election Commission’s spokesperson Advocate Farrukh Dal told The Express Tribune on Saturday.

According to the previous structure, PTI had 13 office bearers at union council, tehsil and district levels. Following differences within the party over the issue, the PTI chief devised a seven-member committee to come up with a plan, but the panel is delaying the crucial decision and subsequently the intra-party polls.

The party had hinted at holding elections in May. Responding to a question about the on-going registration campaign across the nation, he said that the deadline is March 31 and so far there is no change in it. But he was not sure that the deadline would be extended again which would ultimately further delay the polling.

Imran’s party, according to reports, is considering a proposal to hold direct elections for president with a seven-member executive committee excluding basic tiers of UC and tehsil levels. Insiders say the party has decided in principle not to hold elections at the UC level.

“We have been pushing the committee for an early decision but to no avail,” said PTI election commission’s spokesperson Advocate Farrukh Dal said.

Dal said that the election process would start only after a decision of the committee about the organisational structure. “We cannot invite nomination papers when we do not know the names and numbers of offices for the polls,” he explained.

Mode and code

Talking about the mode of elections, Dal said that the commission headed by Tasneem Noorani had proposed a single transferable vote [STV] for the upcoming intra-party elections. “There is a general consensus over the proposal in the party,” he added. Dal explained that STV system would give the runner up a chance to stay within the system instead of being side-lined from the activities creating rifts in the party, he added.

However, the mode of elections has also not been finalised and Noorani has expressed fears that further delays would cause confusion among the workers, Dal said.

When asked about the grouping within the party ahead of intra-party elections, Dal said that the election commission has issued warning to the leaders that they must ensure code of conduct otherwise the EC would proceed against them.

“No campaign relating to the party elections shall employ any means other than door-to-door canvassing, telephonic solicitation by the candidate, solicitation by the electronic mail, use of free social media such as Facebook, WhatsApp and Twitter, and distribution of multiple copies of a single page handbill or leaflet,” reads the code of conduct issued by the PTI Election Commission.

Former governor of Punjab Chaudhry Sarwar who has the backing of Jahangir Tareen-led group would face off against Shafqat Mehmood of Shah Mehmood Qureshi’s group.  —  The Express Tribune

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