The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has decided to use an Android-based mobile app called Results Transmission System (RTS) to compile the final results of general elections 2018-19.
According to the ECP, the commission had successfully tested the app through a trial conducted in NA-4, Peshawar and PS-114, Karachi last year where presiding officers (PO) entered the polling results into the application and then sent them in real time to the ECP server. The photo of FORM IVX is also sent along with the results.
The app also automatically uses GPS to find the location from where the results will be entered and also the time of their uploading results. ECP says that using RTS will increase transparency and discourage unofficial announcements of results by electronic media. ECP in collaboration with National Database Registration Authority (NADRA), Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) and mobile phone operators has been working to develop such an app to for the past many months.
An ECP official remarked:
“It would also help in discouraging unofficial results announcements by electronic media as the commission would be able to provide election results in real time.”
He further said there are around 100,000 polling stations across Pakistan. In most areas 3G, 4G or GPRS connectivity is available except a few remote locations where mobile data networks are not available. But even in far-flung locations, the Polling Officers (POs) can find mobile data signals by travelling a few kilometres. Earlier, in remote areas of Balochistan and other provinces, the POs had to travel long distances, sometimes around 100-kilometer, to submit results. However, the new mobile application-based system would not only enhance efficiency but would also reduce the hassle of the POs.