Boycott indicative of Abdullah’s defeat: Ghani
KABUL (Pajhwok): Presidential runner Dr. Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai on Wednesday pledged to defend each valid ballot and ensure due respect for the nation’s will.
“We remain firmly committed to the realisation of the nation’s political will, which was demonstrated on June 14 in the face of threats,” he told a news conference in the evening.
The former World Bank economist scorned his rival Dr. Abdullah’s allegations of widespread fraud in the runoff polls and asked him to accept the results in the same spirit as he exhibited in the first round.
He expressed his dismay over Abdullah’s boycott of the election management bodies, asking him to rejoin the process. The step was indicative of the his rival’s looming defeat in the electoral fray, he continued.
The then Kabul University chancellor recalled the offer he repeatedly held out to the Reform and Unanimity team leader for frustrating attempts at rigging and rejecting each fraudulent ballot. However, he regretted the negative response from his political foe.
The ex-finance minister expected the Independent Election Commission would adhere to the timelines already announced by unveiling the preliminary results on July 2. This will pave the ground for the new president’s inauguration on August 2.
With regard to adjudication of electoral complaints, Ahmadzai said the legal process would take its due course. Both sides must respect the people’s verdict and decisions of the electoral institutions, he stressed.
By streaming to polling stations, the Afghans had proved wrong dire predictions about insecurity, militant attacks and a low voter turnout, he noted.
He tied the people’s enthusiastic participation to an effective pre-poll campaign by millions of youth and religious scholars in all 34 provinces of the country.
Ahmadzai renewed his team’s commitment to the rule of law and national consensus on key issues, saying they -- being public representatives -- would do all they could for the sake of lasting peace and development.
While spelling out his priorities, the former finance minister promised clean governance, an accountable administration and regard for merit. He also assured Ahmad Zia Massoud of a prominent role in his government.
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