Tainted journalists should be exposed: former ECP official: call for launching probe into bribery allegations
BY: ZULFIQAR AHMAD
A thorough probe should be initiated into allegations that President Asif Ali Zardari is stuffing the pockets of some journalists, former Secretary of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) Kanwar Muhammad Dilshad told Business Recorder on Saturday. “This is a very serious allegation, which may influence the whole process of transparency in upcoming general elections,” he said.
He said that the ECP should take action on its own in this regard and summon Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan of the PML-N Assembly to prove his claim in the best national interest. Recalling his visits abroad for monitoring polls in various countries, Dilshad said that election observers based their observations on newspapers and television reports in respective countries, as they (journalists) kept a critical eye on the whole process.
The image of Pakistan will be badly tarnished globally if the ECP did not take appropriate action in determining facts, he said, adding that the leader of the opposition in the National Assembly opposition “claims having ample evidence that President Zardari has greased the palms of some prominent media persons to make rigging the polls appear to be authentic.
“The election observers will give their views on the basis of both print and electronic media reports…PML-N being the largest opposition political party is duty-bound to expose those journalists who have taken bribes,” Dilshad maintained. He was of the view that the opposition had come up with “a very serious allegation”, which if proved “will spoil the whole process and the parliament has to start from scratch again”. “As a former official of the Election Commission, I had the opportunity to visit different countries to monitor elections…we have seen that if the media tried to influence the elections, they always remained non-transparent,” Dilshad maintained.