IEC to announce initial list of parliamentary polls candidates

The Independent Election Commission of Afghanistan (IEC) will announce the preliminary list of candidates for parliamentary elections by Thursday midnight. 

The commission will not select applications of those applicants whose documents do not comply with the law, head of the IEC Abdulbadi Sayyad said at an session on assessment of nominees’ documents.

“The commission will not facilitate those who have not prepared their documents according to the law. For instance, a candidate has not received the form to prove whether he committed any crime or a candidate whose supporters are less than the figure which has been stated in the law,” said Sayyad.

Based on the electoral calendar, the IEC should have announced the preliminary list of candidates for parliamentary elections on June 28, but electoral body said they received some applications late – which faced the process with a delay.

“When the open session is ended and the commission approves it, the system will decide about the fate of the candidates who will remain and who will be dropped from the list. We are trying to publish the list by 12am tonight,” said IEC commissioner Sayed Hafiz Hashemi. “We received documents of candidates from six provinces just yesterday,” he said.

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IEC starts review of election nominations

The Independent Election Commission (IEC) on Tuesday started the massive task of assessing documents of nominated candidates for parliamentary and district council elections after the registration process wrapped up this week.

According to the commission, 2,580 individuals have been nominated for parliamentary elections and 4,650 people for district council elections.

The IEC said 6,625,952 people have registered to vote across the country.

Deputy head of finance and administration of the IEC Maazullah Dawlati said over 400 candidates for parliamentary elections are women, 15 are Kochis and one is a Sikh.

“The documents of the nominated candidates from Kabul will be assessed first and other provinces from the central zone are next,” he said.

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Political parties called for a change to the electoral system

A group of influential political parties on Monday called on the government to identify the share of political parties in the upcoming parliamentary elections.

In addition, the parties objected stamping of the voter’s national identity cards and suggested shifting from the current SNTV electoral system to a multi-dimensional representation (MDR) system, because the MDR system would give political parties more weight in the upcoming parliamentary ballot.

“On 19 May 2018, the political parties jointly approved the MDR electoral system and we were expecting to submit an official letter to the quadrilateral commission, but unfortunately the government has failed to form the commission yet,” said Mohiuddin Mahdi a senior member of Jamiat-e Islami Afghanistan.

The parties claimed that the government and the Independent Election Commission (IEC) are looking for systemization of fraud for 2019 presidential elections by using paper identity cards.

“We won’t allow anyone anymore to oppose with the fate of Afghanistan’s people,” said Asadullah Sadati a member of [Hezb-e] Wahdat-e Islami Afghanistan.

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IEC begins registering candidates for parliamentary, district council elections

Candidate registration for the upcoming parliamentary and district council elections began on Saturday, as the Independent Election Commission (IEC) registered 500 names in first day to contest the legislative polls.

The parliamentary and district council elections are scheduled to be held on October 20 this year and according to IEC, the candidate registration will continue until June 12.

Afghan citizen, who is 25 or over, can register his name and contest the legislative polls. Moreover, the candidates should bear 1,000 ID cards of voters at the time of registration. However, education plays no role in their candidacy status.

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Candidate registration for upcoming elections to begin on Saturday

Registration of candidates for parliamentary and district council elections will begin on Saturday (May 26), the Independent Election Commission (IEC) announced Thursday.

According to IEC, the registration process would begin in two days and continue until June 12 across the country.

Afghan citizen, who is 25 or over, can register his name and contest the legislative polls. Moreover, the candidates should bear 1,000 followers; education plays no role in their candidacy status.

“No one can get official candidacy status before announcement of the final list of candidates by the election commission,” said Hafizullah Hashimi, a member of the IEC.

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Registration Drive Will Continue with Voters’ Original ID Card

After scrapping the decision to stamp copies of voters identity cards, the Independent Election Commission (IEC) on Thursday said the voter registration process will continue based on voters’ original national identity card (Tazkira).

A week ago, the election commission said that people could use a copy of their Tazkira to get registered with sticker attached on it instead of original identity card.

The decision was taken apparently to address concerns of the people that the Taliban might target those attending to vote by identifying IEC stickers fixed on their ID cards.

However, the decision was scrapped after drawing criticism that it would pave the ground for fraud in the upcoming parliamentary and district council elections.

“Every citizens who have sticker attached on their identity cards could address their security concerns and get duplicate Tazkira at population registration department,” Maliha Hassan, a member of the IEC said.

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Voter registration database yet to be activated

Institutions overseeing election process said lack of a voter registration database will provide the context for fraud.

Although 21 days have passed since the beginning of the voter registration process, still the database has not been activated and there is no database in which to enter voters’ names.

The Independent Election Commission (IEC) officials meanwhile said activating the voter registration database is their priority.

IEC has said ,so far over one million voters have registered their names and their figures have been received by IEC through emails and phone calls from provinces across the country.

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Abdullah sees election as key to solving problems

Abdullah Abdullah said election turnout will show the people’s support of “Jihad values”.

Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah said holding transparent and inclusive elections is the only way to overcome “current problems” in the country.

Addressing an event on the 26th anniversary of Mujahedeen’s victory in Panjsher province on Saturday, Abdullah called on the people to participate in elections.

Members of Jamiat-e-Islami party’s leadership and former Mujahedeen leaders also attended the event at a stadium in the province.

“Taking national identity cards, registering to vote and voting in parliamentary and district council and presidential elections is the duty of all of us and I hope that you fulfill this responsibility,” Abdullah said.

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Almost 400,000 paper ID cards issued in two months

Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah’s office says the use of fake identity cards will be prohibited during elections.

At least 400,000 people have received new paper national identity cards in the past two months and most of these people are eligible to vote, the population registration department of Afghanistan’s census department said Thursday.

According to the authority, more than 4,000 staff members are working at 1,053 centers to issue identity cards to applicants.

“People’s turnout for paper identity card’s has been very low, but recently, especially last week, the attendance of paper identity cards applicants was extremely high,” the department’s spokesman Rohullah Ahmadzai said.

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Almost 190,000 people register to vote in seven days

An election commissioner says the turnout at voter registration centers has not been satisfactory so far.

The Independent Election Commission (IEC) said on Saturday, that 189,061 people, including just over 42,000 women, registered in the first seven days after the launch of the voter registration process last week.

One IEC member said the turnout had not been satisfactory.

“People’s turnout at voter registration centers is unfortunately not satisfactory,” IEC commissioner Maliha Hassan said.

The Head of the Massoud Foundation and a former diplomat, Ahmad Wali Massoud, meanwhile called on the people to participate and make sure they register and vote so as to prevent election fraud as experienced in the past.

“If we leave the ground, for sure, those who committed fraud and those who violated the people’s rights to select candidates will come back once again,” Massoud said.

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