Qayyum’s dual national running mate disqualified
KABUL (PAN): Mohammad Ibrahim Qasimi has been disqualified from contesting the April 5 presidential elections as a second vice presidential running mate of Abdul Qayyum Karzai over his dual nationality.
Qayyum Karzai, a brother of the incumbent president Hamid Karzai, has picked Qasimi as his second vice presidential running mate and former mines minister Wahidullah Shahrani as first.
Qasimi confirmed his disqualification to Pajhwok Afghan News, saying he possessed Canadian nationality.
“I wanted to relinquish the Canadian nationality before submitting my nomination papers with the election commission, but the process required two months, while the commission gave me one day to do so, which was not possible.”
Qasimi said their election team on Monday introduced Mohammad Noor Akbari as his replacement to the Independent Election Commission (IEC).
“We work like a team. It doesn’t matter if I am banned from contesting the elections. I will continue to campaign for Qayyum Karzai,” the former Wolesi Jirga member said.
An IEC official, who declined to be named, said Qayyum visited the election office on Monday along with Akbari. He said Qasimi was not eligible to be fielded as a running mate.
Without giving details, the official said the election commission was reviewing voter cards’ lists of seven candidates.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs a day earlier said it had provided information to the IEC on two candidates and four running mates who held dual nationalities.
Deputy IEC chief Abdul Rahman Hotaki told Pajhwok Afghan News documents of presidential candidates continued to be assessed, hoping a preliminary list of approved candidates would be displayed tomorrow.
“The vetting process is still ongoing and we are hopeful to complete the process until tomorrow when the initial list of approved candidates will be released,” he said.
The IEC was supposed to issue the initial list on Saturday, but failed to do so owing to technical problems.
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