Civil society warns against delay in elections
KABUL (PAN): Expressing aversion to convening a consultative Loya Jirga on the security agreement with the US, some civil society groups on Thursday said every attempt at delaying or not holding next year’s elections would be illegal and catastrophic.
Civil Society and Human Rights Network (CSHRN) chief executive Wadood Pidram told reporters in Kabul the government wanted the consultative jirga to approve a delay in holding the April 5 vote and establish a short-term government.
He said civil society groups were against holding the consultative forum and every effort through the tribal assembly to set back the elections would be illegal and unacceptable.
Pidram claimed there were elements inside and outside the government trying to scuttle political transition. However, he did not name anyone despite insistence from reporters.
But another member of the network, Ahmad Stanikzai, said that calls for the Taliban to join the government were aimed to bring into being an interim set-up.
He added the government should complete security arrangements for the upcoming elections and avoid hatching any conspiracy to delay the vote.
The groups later issued a statement asking the government not to interfere in the affairs of the electoral body and the poll process.
It said elections should be conducted as scheduled and the government would be held responsible for any crisis that could surface in case of a delay in conducting the ballot.
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