Vote verification : NADRA implements code of conduct

Vote verification : NADRA implements code of conduct
Vote verification : NADRA implements code of conduct

ISLAMABAD: NADRA Chairman Tariq Malik, while speaking to NADRA employees, has said that the first few orders of the election tribunals to verify the thumb impressions of voters in constituencies wherein detailed inquiry had been ordered had started pouring in.

He said the organisation was poised to do “an honest, transparent and fair job”.Tariq Malik said this while rolling out a code of conduct for employees.He said, “Honesty, integrity, and fair practice create a solid foundation that earns the public’s trust. NADRA’s code of conduct is the expression of this solid foundation.” He further emphasised that there should be strict compliance by all concerned people to these guidelines for transparent results.

NADRA has prepared this code of conduct for its own employees, public representatives, petitioners and respondents, he added.He said that the guidelines aim at ensuring and maintaining political impartiality across the board. He went on to say the guidelines also help avoid conflict of interest while performing tasks of national importance in a totally non-political, professional and honest manner.

He further said that the employees of NADRA involved in the thumb verification project had to sign on oath of impartiality before they were assigned the task. The objective of the code of conduct was to make individuals concerned accountable for their actions, he added.Tariq Malik said that NADRA employees would not indulge in any activity that would cause a conflict of interest.All employees would show a high sense of responsibility in their working and would perform tasks sincerely and above any political affiliation.

He further said that in the code of conduct no employee engaged in the verification process would directly or indirectly contact the petitioner or respondent in the case. He went on to say that a special chain of custody procedure along with standard operating procedures was developed together with election tribunals to secure the sensitive record.Moreover, all NADRA employees would ensure that evidence being forwarded from the election tribunal is handled with utmost care, he added.

He further said that any alteration or manipulation in the evidence would not be allowed and the perpetrator would be liable to punitive action as described in relevant laws.He went on to say that in addition to this all verification reports, when completed, would be submitted to the election tribunal only and no one else would have access to them.NADRA has beefed its own security and has sought additional help from the Interior Ministry to get Islamabad police on board, he added.Tariq Malik said, “I see this code of conduct as a pragmatic necessity for running a non-political organisation in a complex but politically charged society.”

Malik further said that the code of conduct also provides guidelines for petitioners and respondents. He said that they had been informed that all facilities, including but not limited to NADRA Headquarters and scanning/digitisation facility, where verification exercise would be conducted would remain out of bounds for petitioners or respondents.Same restriction would also apply to all candidates who participated in the general elections of 2013, he addled.

He went on to say that petitioners or responders would pay service charges to NADRA in advance in form of a demand draft. No payments would be made in cash or in addition to the charges against services being rendered, he added. He said that all petitioners or respondents would submit their response, including necessary proofs and/or evidence to support their arguments directly to the election tribunals. – DailyTimes