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Wolesi Jirga slams IEC decision as illegal

Wolesi Jirga slams IEC decision as illegal

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On
Aug 24, 2011 - 16:15

KABULinfo-icon (PANinfo-icon): Members of the Wolesi Jirgainfo-icon, or lower house of the Parliament, on Wednesday denounced as illegal the Independent Election Commission's decision on disqualifying nine legislators.

During a general session, parliamentarians lashed out the poll panel and said they would not accept the replacement of a single member with a losing candidate.

On Sunday, the commission disqualified nine sitting MPs in favour of candidates previously certified as having lost last year's parliamentary election.

IECinfo-icon Chairman Fazal Ahmad Manawi told a press conference the newly-announced winners were from amongst the 62 replacements announced earlier by the special tribunal.

"We don’t accept the replacement of MPs, whether by the IEC or any other institution. We reiterate the IEC decision has no legal basis," the second deputy speaker said.

Decisions taken by the Electoral Complaints Commission (ECCinfo-icon) were final and no institution, including the IEC, could bring changes to them, Ahmad Behzad added.

President Hamid Karzai inaugurated the new Parliament on Jan. 26, 2011, ending weeks of a political deadlock. The Attorney General’s Office invalidated some poll results.

A five-judge special court was set up in late December 2010 to look into allegations of widespread rigging in the vote. On June 23, the court ruled rigging had occurred in 33 of Afghanistaninfo-icon’s 34 provinces.

It disqualified 62 of the 249 MPs, nearly a quarter of the lower house, on the basis of a vote recount.

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