Chief Executive Order 12, Referendum Order 2002

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An Order to provide for holding referendum

F.No.2(4)/2002‑Pub., dated 9‑4‑2002.‑‑The following Order promulgated by the Chief Executive is hereby published for, general information:

Whereas on 12th October, 1999 a situation had arisen due to steps taken by the then Prime Minister undermining the discipline and integrity of the armed forces of Pakistan and thereby potentially jeopardizing the security of Pakistan;

And whereas in pursuance of the deliberations and decisions of the Chiefs of Staff of the Armed Forces and Corps Commanders of Pakistan Army, General Pervez Musharraf, Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee and Chief of Army Staff proclaimed Emergency throughout Pakistan and assumed the office of Chief Executive of Pakistan;

And whereas the Constitution was placed in abeyance and Provisional Constitution Order No. 1 dated 14th October, 1999 was promulgated to provide a framework. for governance under law, as nearly as may be in accordance with the Constitution,

And whereas all laws as specified in Article 5 of the Provisional Constitution Order No. 1 of 1999 continue to be in force subject to orders of the Chief Executive;

And whereas, since at that juncture the institutions of State stood seriously weakened and the democratic and moral authority of the Government of the day stood gravely eroded, the Chief Executive of Pakistan announced a 7‑Point Agenda on 17th October. 1999, stating his objectives to rebuild national confidence and morale; strengthen the Federation, remove inter‑provincial disharmony and restore national cohesion; revive the economy and restore investor confidence; ensure law and‑ order and dispense speedy justice; depoliticize State institutions; devolution of power to the grassroots level; and ensure swift and across the board accountability;

And whereas the Chief Executive of Pakistan has emphasized that inter alia, appropriate measures will be taken for good governance, economic revival, poverty alleviation and political restructuring;

And whereas it imperative to consolidate the measures taken by the Chief Executive of Pakistan for the reconstruction of the institutions of State for establishing genuine and sustainable democracy to ensure good governance for an irreversible transfer of power to the people of Pakistan;

And whereas it is essential to combat extremism and sectarianism for the security of the State and tranquillity of society;

And whereas it is in the supreme national interest to obtain a democratic mandate from the people of Pakistan through referendum for General Pervez Musharraf to continue to be the President of Pakistan;

Now, therefore, in pursuance of the Proclamation‑of Emergency of the Fourteenth day of October, 1999, and the Provisional Constitution Order No.1 of 1999, and in exercise of all other powers enabling him 'in that behalf, the Chief Executive of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is pleased to make and promulgate the following Order:‑‑


[See Article 3(3)] .



[See Article 3(4)]

  1. Poll for the purpose of the referendum shall be held on the 30th day of April, 2002, from 9‑00 a.m. to 7‑00 p.m.

  2. Polling under this Order shall be by secret ballot and every voter shall cast his vote on the ballot paper specified in the First Schedule.

  3. (1) Where a voter presents himself for casting his vote, the Presiding Officer shall issue a ballot paper to him after satisfying himself' about his identity and shall, for that purpose, require the voter to produce the identity card issued to him.

(2) Before a ballot paper is issued to a voter,‑‑

(a) his name and identity card number shall be entered on the counterfoil of the ballot papers;

(b) the ballot paper shall on its back he stamped with the official mark and initialled by the Presiding Officer;

(c) the voter shall put his signature or thumb‑impression on the counterfoil; and

(d) the Presiding Officer shall put a mark on the right hand thumb of the voter with indelible ink:

Provided that where the right hand thumb of a person is mussing such mark shall be made on the left hand thumb of such person.

(3) The voter on receiving a ballot paper shall‑‑

(a) forthwith proceed to the plea reserved for marking of ballot papers.

(b) secretly affix on the ballot paper the stamp provided to him by the Presiding Officer to indicate his answer to the question; and

(c) after he has affixed the prescribed stamp, fold the ballot paper and insert it in the ballot box.

(4) Where a voter is blind or otherwise so incapacitated that he cannot vote without the assistance of a companion, the Presiding Officer shall allow him such assistance, and thereupon such voter may cast his vote as provided in sub‑paragraph (3).

(5) No voter shall vote at the referendum‑‑

(a) more than once at the same polling station; or

(b) at more than one polling station.

(6) All votes cast in contravention of sub‑paragraph (5) shall be void.

  1. A Presiding Officer may refuse to deliver a ballot paper to a person if he has reason to believe that such person has already cast his vote in the referendum at the same polling station or at any other polling station, or is not the person whose identity card has been produced by such person.

  2. (1) The following persons may cast votes by postal ballot in such manner as the Commission may specific:‑‑

(a) a person who is a public servant within the meaning of section 21 of the Pakistan Penal Code (Act XLV of 1860), including members of armed forces of Pakistan and persons attached with such forces;

(b) persons employed by statutory corporations,

(c) persons employed by companies and corporations set up, established or controlled by the Federal Government or a Provincial Government;

(d) citizens of Pakistan residing abroad;

(e) wives and children of persons referred to in clauses (a), (b), (c) and (d); and

(f) a person who is detained in prison or held on custody;

(2) A voter eligible to cast vote by postal ballot shall apply to the Returning Officer alongwith a copy of his National Identity Card for a ballot paper for voting by postal ballot at least one week before the date of polling.

(3) The Returning Officer shall immediately upon the receipt of an application by a voter under sub‑paragraph (2) send by post to such voter a ballot paper and an envelope bearing on its face a form of certificate of posting, showing the date thereof, to be filled in by the proper official of the Post Office at the time of despatch by the voter or, where a specific request has been made, deliver the ballot paper to such person directly or through an authorised messenger to avoid any delay.

(4) A voter, on receiving his ballot paper for voting by post shall record his vote in the manner specified by the Commission and send the ballot paper to the Returning Officer in the envelope sent to him under sub paragraph (3), by post or through an authorised messenger, so as to reach the Returning Officer before the consolidation of results by him.

(5) The Commission may make arrangements for provision and collection of ballot papers of the person referred to in sub‑paragraph (1) collectively, without compromising the secrecy of the ballot.

  1. A person referred to in clauses (a), (b), (c), (d) and (e) of sub paragraph (1) of paragraph 5 who is eligible to cast vote by postal ballot may, instead of voting through postal ballot, appear before a Presiding Officer alongwith his National Identity Card cast his vote in person at any polling station and the Presiding Officer shall, after identification, allow him to cast his vote.

  2. (1) Immediately after the close of the poll, the Presiding Officer shall‑‑‑

(a) in the presence of such person as may be specified by the Commission, open the ballot box, or ballot boxes, and count the ballot papers taken out therefrom; and

(b) count in such a manner as may be prescribed, the votes cast in favour of each answer to the question after rejecting the invalid ballot papers, that is, the ballot papers which have‑‑‑

(i) no official mark or initials of the Presiding Officer.

(ii) any mark by which the voter can be identified;

(iii) no mark to indicate the answer to the question; and

(c) prepare a statement of the result of the count and such other statements and packets in such, manner as the Commission may direct.

(2) The Presiding Officer shall, immediately after the count under sub‑paragraph (1) prepare a ballot paper account showing:‑‑

(a) the number of ballot papers entrusted to him,

(b) the number of ballot papers taken out of the ballot boxes and counted; and

(c) the number of unissued ballot papers and spoilt and invalid ballot papers.

(3) The Presiding Officer shall, immediately after the close of the proceedings under sub‑paragraphs (1) and (2), cause the statements, packets and account prepared by him to be sent to the Returning Officer together with such other records as the Returning Officer may direct.

  1. (1) The Returning Officer shall, on receipt of the statements of the results of the count from the Presiding Officer, consolidate in the prescribed manner the results of the count by the Presiding Officers in respect of each answer to the question, including therein the postal ballot received by him until then.

(2) The Returning Officer shall, after obtaining the result of the count, forthwith submit a return‑of the referendum to the Commission.

(3) The Commission shall announce the result of the referendum showing the total number of votes cast in favour of each answer and shall also publish the same in the Official Gazette.

  1. (1) Save as otherwise provided, the Commission shall make all arrangements necessary for holding of the referendum, including the appointment of Returning Officer, make provision of polling stations and may issue and prescribe such orders directions and instructions, and exercise such powers as may be necessary for the performance of its functions for ensuring that the referendum is conducted justly and fairly in accordance with the provisions of this Order.

(2) The Commissioner may authorise any member of the Commission, an authority or officer to exercise any of its powers and functions under this Order.

(3) The Commissioner shall have the same power as a Judge of the Supreme Court to punish any person for contempt of Court as provided under the Contempt of Court Act, 1976 (XLIV of 1976).

(4) All executive authorities in the Federation and in the Provinces shall render such assistance to the Commissioner and the Members of the Commission in discharge of his or their functions as may be required of them by the Commissioner and the Members of the Commission.

1. Short title and commencement.‑‑(1) This Order ma be called the Referendum Order, 2002.

(2) It extends to the whole of Pakistan

(3) It shall come into force at once

2. Definitions.‑‑In this Order, unless there is anything repugnant in the subject or context.‑‑ .

(a) "Commissioner" means the Chief Election Commissioner appointed under the Election Commission Order, 2002 (Chief Executive Order No. 1 of 2002) and the "commission" means the Election Commission constituted under the‑said Order;

(b) "question", being a (mater of national importance, means the question to be asked at the referendum under this Order;

(c) "Schedule" means a schedule to the Order; and

(d) "Returning Officer" means a Returning Officer, Additional Returning Officer, Assistant Returning Officer.

3. Referendum.‑‑(I) There shall be a referendum on the 30th day of April, 2002, in which every citizen of Pakistan who has attained the age of eighteen 'years on the date of referendum and possesses a National Identity Card issued under the National Database and Registration Authority Order, 2000 (VIII of 2000), shall be eligible to vote at the referendum;

Provided that where a National Identity Card under the National Database and Registration Authority Ordinance, 2000 (VIII of 2000) has not been issued, but he is in possession of an identity card validly issued under section 5 of the National Registration Act, 1973 (LVI of 1973), (since repealed), he shall be eligible to cast his vote on the basis of such identity card.

(2) For the purpose of this referendum, the whole of Pakistan shall be a single constituency and every voter shall be entitled to vote at a polling station of his choice regardless of his place of residence.

(3) The question for referendum shall be as set out in the First Schedule on the ballot papers in Urdu:

Provided that in the Province of Sindh, the Commission shall provide a ballot paper printed in Sindhi or in Urdu as demanded by the voter;

(3) The question shall be answered in either "yes" or "no" by affixing the stamp provided by the Commission approximately into appropriate circular printed on the ballot paper.

(4) The procedure for holding the referendum shall be as provided in the Second Schedule.

4. Consequence of the result of referendum.‑‑(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in the Constitution or any law for the time being in force, if the majority of the votes cast in the referendum are in the affirmative, the people of Pakistan shall be deemed to have given the democratic mandate to General Pervez Musharraf to serve the nation as President of Pakistan for a period of five years to enable him, inter alia, to consolidate the reforms and the reconstruction of institutions of State for the establishment of genuine and .sustainable democracy, including the entrenchment of the ,local Government system, to ensure continued good governance for the welfare of the people, and to combat extremism and sectarianism for the security of the State and the tranquillity of society.

(2) The period of five years referred in clause (1) shall be computed from the first meeting of the Majlis‑e‑Shoora (Parliament) to be elected as a result of the forthcoming general election to be held in October, 2002, in accordance with the Judgment of the Supreme Court.

5. Bar of Jurisdiction.‑‑(1) Subject to clause (2), no Court, tribunal or other authority shall call in question, or permit to be called in question, the validity of any provision of this Order or of anything done or action taken, or purporting to be done or taken, thereunder on any grounds whatsoever or grant an injunction, make any order or entertain any proceedings in respect of any matter provided for in this Order or arising therefrom.

(2) All disputes as to be result of the referendum shall be finally decided by the Commission and no Court or other authority shall have any jurisdiction to entertain any proceedings relating thereto.

6. Order to override other laws.‑‑The provisions of this order shall have effect notwithstanding anything contained in the Constitution or any other law for the time being in force.

7. Removal of difficulty.‑‑If any difficultly arises in giving effect to any of the provisions of this Order, the President may make such order for the removal of the difficulty as he may deem fit.


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