Pakistan perhaps could use a modification of its laws on political parties.
A few observations drawn from an Express Tribune item on the “mushroom growth” in the number of parties:
The number of approved political parties has grown from 147 to 281 in the last five years. Partly this is because “there are dozens of parties registered with the same prefix or suffix – the Pakistan Muslim League, for instance.”
Fully 90% of the registered parties are a “one man show”!
There is no law to deregister a party.
It gets worse:
Some argue that it is easier to register a political party in Pakistan than to register your child in school.
There are no registration fees and all you need is an application, a copy of the party’s manifesto and constitution along with a list of office-bearers. An applicant can also give an undertaking that intra-party elections will be held soon.
The ECP doesn’t have a mechanism to verify documents submitted and nor does it pursue the verification process. As a result, many party manifestos or constitutions are reworded versions of another party’s. The list of office-bearers is only checked for names that another party’s lists may include.
This process is not exactly helpful to developing a party system that would actually aid voter representation. And, no, this is not the worst of problems facing Pakistani democracy, or Pakistan more broadly.