Senate spurns IEC deadline for approval of laws
KABUL (PAN): A number of senators on Tuesday asserted their legislative privilege, saying the Independent Election Commission (IEC) reserved no right to set the parliament a deadline for approval of draft laws.
A day earlier, the commission asked both houses of the parliament to adopt proposed laws on elections and IEC structure within 10 days. A delay in their passage will mean non-implementation of the laws, it warned.
But an upper house member from northern Takhar province rejected the IEC ultimatum as baseless, indicating the legislative measures might not be sanctioned in 10 days.
Abdul Wahab Irfan told the house:”There is a possibility of delay due to Ramadan holidays. And their signing by the president may also take time. The IEC shouldn’t make such remarks.”
His colleague from Khost province, Arifullah Pakhtun, also argued the poll panel reserved no right to set cut-off dates for lawmakers. The IEC comments amounted to insulting the parliament, he believed.
Senate Chairman Fazal Hadi Muslimyar said joint parliamentary commission had been set up to reconcile differences between the two chambers on contentious articles of the draft laws.
With the commission discussing the differences, he referred to several special sessions to clear the drafts. He chided the IEC for setting them time limits.
“We know how to conduct our legislative business, our core prerogative. We reject challenges from the entities with no legislative powers … the polls don’t concern Manawi (IEC chief) alone…”
Manawi has been illegally continuing in his office after completing his tenure two months back, according to Muslimyar, who observed the elections represented a challenge for the entire nation and government.
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