11 complaints lodged over runoff campaign: IECC
KABUL (Pajhwok): The Independent Electoral Complaints Commission (IECC) on Sunday confirmed receiving nearly a dozen complaints about violations of the electioneering restrictions in the lead up to the June 14 presidential runoff election.
The electoral watchdog said some of the complaints were about inflammatory speeches and the use of threatening language by campaigners of both the presidential candidates.
IECC officials held a meeting with representatives of both the candidates, civil society activists and media representatives in Kabul regarding the complaints.
The electioneering that began on May 22 would last until June 11.
IECC deputy secretary Waleed Sarwari told the meeting that so far 11 complaints had been registered against electioneering activities.
One of the complaints was registered by Abdullah’s team in Takhar province, another by Ghani’s team in Ghor province and a third by residents against Abdullah’s team.
The remaining eight complaints have been registered in Kabul --- four on behalf of Abdullah and as many on behalf of Ghani, he said.
Abdullah’s team has claimed Ghani used government resources while Ghani team has accused his rival’s team of tearing down his campaign posters and billboards, Sarwari said.
He said Abdullah’s team had also been accused for insulting Ghani in some of campaign advertisements.
“A review of the complaints is underway and will be addressed in a public hearing after we receive documents supporting the objections,” he said.
Ghani’s first vice-presidential running mate, Abdur Rashid Dostum, on a campaign trip to Balkh had asked people to vote for his team and those denying would be considered traitors.
Abdullah’s second vice-presidential pick, Mohammad Mohaqqiq has also been accused of insulting Ghani during his campaign rally.
Sarwari said they had asked the candidates at the start of the campaign to adhere to the code of conduct while campaigning.
Calling the second round of presidential election as sensitive, he called on all the stakeholders to be careful.
“The electoral bodies have learned from the mistakes happened in the first round and in the light of these experiences, the commissions would not repeat those mistakes,” Sarwari said.
He said they believed candidates themselves could play an important role preventing law violations and rigging.
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