1. RAISE YOUR VOICE!! Political finance laws should require full disclosure of the income of candidates, how much they spend on elections and what they spend on.
  2. TAKE ACTION!! You, the regulators, the media, the civil society and the public at large needs to ensure that political finance regulations are implemented and political parties and candidates are held accountable.
  3. TAKE ACTION!! The right to information act allows you to access any public record, even election expenses incurred by contesting candidates.
  4. TAKE ACTION!! Have you checked your representative’s financial statements? You can! All account statements of all elected members are accessible to all citizens.
  5. TAKE ACTION!! All statements of assets and liabilities of all parliamentarians are viewable on ECP’s website. Check them out and hold them accountable!
  6. FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Do you think that corporate donations to contesting candidates should be allowed in Pakistan?
  7. FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Do you think political advertisements in Pakistan should be controlled?
  8. FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Do you think setting limits on political spending is against freedom of speech?
  9. FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Do you think spending limits on elections should be the same for all constituencies.
  10. FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Do you think all political parties should get equal free or financially supported airtime on media.
  11. FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Do you think NADRAFBR and NAB can play an important role in regulating political finance laws?
  12. HAVE YOU EVER WONDERED: How do parties raise money? Is it direct solicitation by candidates or fundraising events or asking supporters to contribute or party fees?
  13. HAVE YOU EVER WONDERED: Why Pakistani political parties are able to spend billions of rupees on election expenses.
  14. TAKE ACTION!! Hold candidates responsible if you can see that they have overspent their legally permitted limit during elections.
  15. HAVE YOU EVER WONDERED: What is the penalty for late-filing or non filing of election expense reports?
  16. True or False: There is a ban on anonymous donations to political parties in Pakistan.
  17. True or False: Contesting candidates are allowed to offer transportation to voter on the day of elections.
  18. True or False: Political parties have to report regularly on their finances.
  19. True or False: Political parties in Pakistan have to report their finances for election campaigns.
  20. True or False: There is a limit to the amount a political party can spend on its election campaign.
  21. True or False: Defaulters of bank loans and government dues are disqualified from being electedor member of the Parliament.
  22. True or False: There are no spending limits imposed for senate elections.
  23. HAVE YOU EVER WONDERED: There are laws on the amount and source of any donation made to political parties.
  24. FACT: regulation of campaign expenditure ensures a level playing for those who do not have billions to spend on election campaigns.
  25. TAKE ACTION!! Hold political parties accountable on their sources of funds.
  26. TAKE ACTION!! Make sure that elections are fair and just. The political campaigns have to have limits and should be monitored.
  27. FOOD FOR THOUGHT: A level playing field has to be ensured by setting realistic spending limits for all political parties and candidates to follow.
  28. FOOD FOR THOUGHT: ECP has the legal authority to confiscate funds that are obtained from unauthorized sources. ECP has never taken such an actions.
  29. FOOD FOR THROUGHT! It is estimated that an average campaign costs between PKR 20-25 million for a national and PKR 12-15 million for a provincial constituency. The limits are far less than this.
  1. Realistic political finance systems encourages women and marginalized to participate in elections.
  2. Currently in Pakistan, there are no provisions or financial advantages to encourage gender quality in political parties.
  1. Every stakeholder should know. What Political Finance is? How it is regulated?
  2. We need rationale expense limits.
  3. We need limits for political parties.
  4. There should be a ceiling on election campaign expenditure by the political parties.
  5. Political parties should also disclose and submit their statements of election campaign expenditure to make them accountable.
  6. Elections campaigns by political parties and individual candidates should be monitored by the ECP and to impose sanctions in case of violations.
  7. Annual accounts and statements of political parties should be placed on website by the ECP.
  8. ECP should evolve an effective mechanism to monitor the election campaign and safe guard the violations.
  9. ECP should have the authority to audit and investigate the accounts of political parties.
  10. ECP should be strengthened and empowered to implement the political finance regulations.
  11. ECP should enforce the regulations within its mandate in existing legal framework.
  12. ECP should propose the amendments in the law enabling it to enforce the regulations if not available in the existing framework.
  1. Political finance rules and regulations are not followed in Pakistan because of lack of implementation mechanism.
  2. The procedures for filing complaints against violations of political finance laws are so confusing that mostly no legal action is taken in court against misdemeanors.
  3. ECP is the custodian for the implementation of the Political Finance laws and regulations, but it does not have full power to take any substantial corrective action.
  4. Intentional and unintentional lack of priority to political finance results in weak implementation of laws and regulations.
  5. There are no clearly defined actions against those who do not follow the laws and regulations governing political finance in Pakistan.
  6. There are insufficient financial resources to take the required actions to implement the laws and regulations.
  7. The systems for implementation are convoluted and encourage defiance of the law and regulation.
  1. The spending limits for political parties and candidates is not realistic.
  2. Spending limits need to be based on economic indicators. Limits set in 2002 are no longer relevant or viable in today’s economy.
  3. There are no spending limits on the amount of donations that a party is allowed to accrue.
  4. No law in Pakistan sets limits on political parties’ expenses or requires them to declare expenses Campaign expenses.
  5. No ceiling has been fixed for the campaign expenses of political parties.
  6. Vote buying and bribery is likely to happen if there is no law requiring candidates to report the amounts and sources of their income.
  7. There are no laws on the amount and source of donations made to contesting candidates.
  8. There are no laws to regulate party expenditure on electoral expenses.
  9. There are no laws for full disclosure of the income of candidates or how and what they spend on for elections.
  10. In Pakistan the law is silent on the contesting candidates accepting donations from foreign interests.
  1. ECP is the regulatory authority for Political Finance in Pakistan.
  2. It is only through a regulatory authority that we will be able to make the political finance process in Pakistan transparent and accountable.
  3. The role of ECP needs to be enhanced, proper systems and capacity needs to be built to make it an effective regulatory authority.
  4. Monitoring teams appointed by the ECP are instrumental in keeping a check on election campaigns.
  5. Funds obtained from banned sources by political parties can be confiscated by the Election Commission of Pakistan.
  1. PAKISTAN ELECTORAL HISTORY: The first limits for election expenses were set in 1962 – Rs. 2000 for candidates for a National Assembly seat and Rs. 1000 for a Provincial Assembly seat.
  2. Political Finance in Pakistan is regulated by Disclosures, Limitations and Bans.
  3. PAKISTAN ELECTORAL HISTORY: In 1962 there were stringent sanctions for politicians who did not submit the required expense reports – Rs. 500 fine and disqualification from being an elected member of the assembly for 4 years.
  4. FACT: Returning officers are the eyes and ears of the ECP. They are responsible for reporting irregularities and launching legal proceedings as and when required..
  5. PAKISTAN ELECTORAL HISTORY: In 1962, 581 contraventions were reported against contestants for breaking political finance laws.
  6. PAKISTAN ELECTORAL HISTORY: In the 1962 general elections, 380 candidates were prosecuted for delayed submissions of election expense reports.
  7. PAKISTAN ELECTORAL HISTORY: In the 1962 general elections, 201 candidates were prosecuted for non submissions of election expense reports.
  8. PAKISTAN ELECTORAL HISTORY: In the 1965 the limits for election expenses were increase to Rs. 15000 for National Assembly and Rs. 10000 for Provincial Assembly.
  9. PAKISTAN ELECTORAL HISTORY: After the 1965 elections, 105 cases were referred to the courts for failing to follow the campaign  finance requirements.
  10. PAKISTAN ELECTORAL HISTORY: In 1965, 67 cases were convicted for not following the election finance law.
  11. PAKISTAN ELECTORAL HISTORY: The first ever general elections covered by the Legal Framework Order on the basis of adult’s right to vote were held in 1970-71.
  12. PAKISTAN ELECTORAL HISTORY: The National and Provincial Assemblies (Elections) Ordinance increased the election expense limits to Rs. 25000 and Rs. 15000 for the national and provincial assemblies respectively.
  13. PAKISTAN ELECTORAL HISTORY: The 1970 Elections Ordinance set the precedence of not taking action against candidates who do not file election expenses.
  14. PAKISTAN ELECTORAL HISTORY: In 1976, spending limits were fixed at Rs. 40000 for a National Assembly seat and Rs. 25000 for a Provincial seat or a sum calculated at the rate of fifty paisa for each entry in the electoral roll for the constituency for election to that seat, whichever is greater.
  15. PAKISTAN ELECTORAL HISTORY: In 1975, the spending limit for elections to a seat in the Senate was introduced at Rs. 5000.
  16. PAKISTAN ELECTORAL HISTORY: The 1985 general elections saw “never seen before” huge amounts of money spent on electoral campaigns.
  17. PAKISTAN ELECTORAL HISTORY: In 1985, General Zia declared that no contesting candidate would need to submit election expense returns.
  18. PAKISTAN ELECTORAL HISTORY: In 1988 and 1990 elections the limits on election expenses remained the same (Rs. 500,000 for National Assembly and Rs. 300,000 for Provincial Assembly).
  19. PAKISTAN ELECTORAL HISTORY: In 1993 the election expense limits were raised to Rs. 1,000,000 for National Assembly and Rs. 600,000 for Provincial Assembly.
  20. PAKISTAN ELECTORAL HISTORY: In 2002, the election expense ceilings were revised to Rs. 1,500,000 for National Assembly and Rs. 1,000,000 for Provincial Assembly and remain the same to date.
  21. PAKISTAN ELECTORAL HISTORY: in 2002 the election expense limit for the Senate elections was set at Rs. 1,500,000 and remains the same to date.
  22. There are no limits on how much political parties can spend on elections, regardless of the number of candidates they nominate.
  23. All candidates running for elections must, at the time of nominations, submit proof of all their own, their spouses and their dependent’s assets and liabilities.
  1. Spending Limits: Limits on the amount that can be spent on politics and elections.
  2. Funding sources: The source of the funding received by a political party or candidate.
  3. Candidate: A person who stands for election to Parliament. They can be nominated by political parties or stand as independents.
  4. Constituency: citizens residing in a particular political representative’s area or district.
  5. Constitution: The set of basic rules and laws by which a country or state is governed. The ultimate set of laws to which all other laws made by contemporary governments are subservient to..
  6. Direct democracy: Government by the people in fact rather than merely in principle. The citizenry themselves voting on all issues affecting them.
  7. Impeachment: The legislative equivalent of a criminal prosecution, where a high government official is subject to an investigation, indictment and subsequent trial.
  1. Political finance can positively change the electoral system to make it more inclusive and define the true polity of a nation.
  1. Political finance can positively change the electoral system to make it more inclusive and define the true polity of a nation.
  1. STAKEHOLDERS OF POLITICAL FINANCE: Political contesting candidates, political parties, regulatory bodies, civil society, media, state, the public at large.
  1. Money in politics undeniably influences the quality of democracy and governance. We need to regulate to the finance to positively control the influence.
  2. Money is necessary for democratic politics, and political parties must have access to funds to play their part in the political process. Regulation must not curb healthy competition.
  3. Money has never been an unproblematic part of the political system, and regulations are always desirable.
  4. Effective regulations and disclosure can help to control adverse effects of the role of money in politics, but only if well conceived and implemented.
  5. Effective oversight depends on activities in interaction by several stakeholders (such as regulators, civil society and the media) and based on transparency.
  6. More informed voters, more equal footings on which parties and candidates compete, or more equitable access to politics across socioeconomic groups.
  7. Regulation defines: what is to be disclosed, who is to disclose it, how often, and to what type of regulatory body.
  1. Global political finance regulations understand that money is essential needed for political and electoral activities.
  2. Limits on money spent on election campaigns is an accepted and approved global practice.
  3. Almost all the countries in the world require some form of financial reporting from political parties and candidates.
  4. Majority of countries in the world ban donations to political parties from foreign sources.
  5. Some countries ban donations to political parties from corporate entities as well.
  6. Main global trends in regulating political finance: Regulating private funding; Setting spending limit; Disclosing party/candidate financing.
  7. WHAT HAPPENS IN INDIA: There are no bans on corporate donations to political parties.
  8. WHAT HAPPENS IN INDIA: There is a ban on donations from foreign interests to contesting candidates.
  9. WHAT HAPPENS IN INDIA: The law does not prevent political parties from accepting anonymous donations.
  10. WHAT HAPPENS IN INDIA: Political parties get free or financially supported access to media.
  11. WHAT HAPPENS IN BANGLADESH: Polical parties can accept anonymous donations not exceeding USD 200.
  12. WHAT HAPPENS IN BANGLADESH: Political parties get access to state-owned media during general elections.
  13. WHAT HAPPENS IN UK: Political parties do not have to pay for airtime for campaign broadcasts.
  14. WHAT HAPPENS IN UK: Spending limits for political parties during elections, per constituency, is USD 49000.
  15. WHAT HAPPENS IN USA: There are no spending limits for presedential electoral campaigns for parties or candidates.
  16. WHAT HAPPENS IN USA: There is no access to free or subsidize media for parties or candidates contesting elections for public offices.
  17. WHAT HAPPENS IN GERMANY: Political parties are eligible for direct funding if they secured a set minimum number of votes in the most recent elections.
  18. WHAT HAPPENS IN FRANCE: If the gender difference among candidates is larger than 2%, the public funding is reduced by 3/4 of this difference.
  1. Candidates or political parties Using money in the elections to change the results of the elections is corrupt practice.
  2. “Misreporting” or “Misrepresenting” actual expenses while filing.
  3. Vote buying.
  4. ILLEGAL: Late filing or non filing of election expense returns and annual returns.
  5. The only way to detect violations in political finance regulations is to monitor.
  6. Using money to bribe is corrupt political finance practice.
  7. Exploiting state-resources to fund campaigns is banned globally and is a gross violation of political finance regulations.
  1. Political finance laws define the dos and don’ts of the use of money in politics and elections.
  2. Political finance laws are framed to regulate the the involvement of money in the system.
  3. Political finance laws are applicable to political parties and contesting candidates.
  4. Political finance laws provide a level playing field for all to contest with ease.
  5. THE UNITED NATIONS CONVENTION AGAINST CORRUPTION asks for complete transparency of the funding of election campaigns and political parties.
  6. Pakistan is signatory to the United Nations Convention Against Corruption, which binds it to check corruption in political finance.
  7. Political finance laws can be used to encourage women to participate in politics.
  8. Laws and limits on political funding shouldn’t affect or stop healthy competition.