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MPs Condemn Govt. Pressure on Election Commission

Afghanistan Parliment

Kabul – Members of a parliamentary group Monday spoke out against the Afghan government’s push to use old registration cards in the upcoming presidential election, citing greater risk of fraud. The Resalat Parliamentary Group released a statement warning the executive arm of the government that if the 2014 election collapses with fraud, it will mean a failure of democracy and Afghanistan will enter a huge crisis.

“In order to have a transparent election, we should have the exact statistics of the population which the government has delayed to undertake. The government decision to use the old [voting] cards is paving the way for fraud in the election,” Resalat member Zahir Saadat said in the statement.

The group asked the government to respect the autonomy of the Independent Election Commission (IEC) which had initially recommended a new registration and electronic voting cards country-wide. It also called on both the Parliament and Senate to pressure the government to approve such decisions soon, and it called on the international community not to support an undemocratic process.

“The international community should know that the Afghan government is following a policy that is weakening the electoral system,” Zahir added. But the IEC responded Monday saying that it is making its own decisions without pressure from the government.

“Several parties and organisations including the government are trying to interfere and change the outcomes for themselves, but the election commission is not allowing anyone to illegally interfere and reach their aims,” spokesman Noor Mohammad Noor told TOLOnews. The presidential and provincial council elections will be held April 5 2014.(Tolonews)


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