Karachi, Apr 19 : Despite the displeasure expressed by the Muttahida Qaumi Movement's (MQM), the European Union Election Observation Mission (EUEOM) stood by its claim that the February 18 parliamentary elections in Pakistan were inherently flawed.
EUEOM chief observer, Michael Gahler, asserted that he stands by the report and has nothing to change.
"I can confirm that the MQM is not happy with some of our findings. However, I have been misinterpreted in certain sections of the press. The media has put words in my mouth. But I'm not taking back the substance of my report. I endorse my report," the Dawn quoted Gahler, as saying.
Gahler further said that after the election it was the time to set the record straight, before the next election. He also asserted that the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) should be reconstituted "through multi-party consultations in parliament so it can be truly independent."
Gahler went on to say that the structure of the ECP should be made more effective. "Some complaints from the 2002 elections have not been addressed," he said.
He added that if electoral reforms were not addressed, the issue would become a "hot potato."
Gahler also said that the EU was willing to support Pakistan in its process of democratisation.