"A results system will update information for each polling station on an android-based mobile app" The Friday Times, Plot No 52-53, N-Block, Main Guru Mangat Road, Gulberg II, Lahore, Pakistan. 042.35779186; Fax: 042.35779186, email: ...


World Water Day


In front of climate change threats, particularly on water resources, global initiatives on water and climate, such as the Paris Pact for Water and Climate, the Megacity Alliance for Water and the climate, the incubator platform “100 projects for water and climate in Africa”, are generating a strong mobilization. This platform, created during COP22 to consolidate projects and facilitate financing, has been highlighted by France’s One Planet Summit last December 12th and is part of the 12 commitments made on this occasion (“Protecting land and water resources against the effects of climate change”).

France has put water access issues at the heart of its development aid activities, most often in consultation with the best-performing French companies in this area of water supply and sanitation.

Franco-Pakistani cooperation in water sector in Faisalabad has been running successfully for six years, meeting thus the priorities of the federal government and the province of Punjab. More than 30 million Euros were spent, as part of an intergovernmental financial protocol signed at the end of 2010, at phase-1 of a project of extension of water resources in Faisalabad. This contract, which has been implemented by French companies Artélia and Vinci Grands Projets, is currently being finalized. The continuation of this project is under study.

A French funding, approved in 2017, of almost one million Euros will furthermore aim to set up a training program for the staff of the public agencies of water sector for the purpose of capacity building.

Pakistan’s vulnerability to climate change, particularly desertification and depletion of water resources, in the context of population growth and accelerated urbanization, constitutes a major challenge. France intends to continue and deepen its cooperation with Pakistan to provide its expertise and know-how for a better water management in the interest of an increasing number of citizens.

Embassy of France in Pakistan,

Via email.

Election reforms


Election Commission officials see the 2018 elections as being more transparent than previous ones because of several amendments.

Technology will be introduced so the result management system will make the numbers available within 14 days. A results transmission system will update information for each polling station through an android-based mobile app.

Polling stations will be geotagged along with photographs. People with special needs, the elderly and government officials can use postal ballots.

The new technology being proposed by the ECP without any practical testing might take five more years to become trusted and credible. In 2013, every party had apprehensions over manipulation, even the winning side.

The ECP could not take timely decisions on some controversial constituencies. The most prominent is NA-125 whose decision is still pending.

The ECP must engage experts and use successful international models. To get rid of pre-poll rigging, unequivocal guidelines must bind candidates. It seems a daunting task to manage the election of four provinces simultaneously. The ECP should break it down because conducting an election for the entire country on one day is an insurmountable task.

Haider Ali,

Urban Sector Planning and Management Service Unit.