Khost council remains split over Senate rep
KHOST CITY (Pajhwok): Some members of the provincial council in southeastern Khost province on Sunday alleged they had been offered bribes to vote for a specific senatorial candidate.
Over the issue who should represent them in the upper house of parliament, the council has been divided into two groups --- each consisting of nine and six members, a source said on condition of anonymity.
The six-member group has repeatedly asked members of the larger group to vote for a senatorial candidate of their choice in return for $150000, claimed the source.
Khost provincial council member, Kafil Rehan, confirmed to Pajhwok that the offer had been made by a council member Latif Khan Jawandi. He said the offer was not acceptable to them under any circumstances.
He said Jawandi had offered him and other members of the larger group from $150,000 to $200,000 for electing him as a senatorial representative.
“We have many times visited the provincial election commission office to call for holding the election of administrative board members and the Senate representative. But the elections need a two-thirds majority which is incomplete until the second group joins,” said Rehan.
Another member of the council, wishing to remain anonymous, told Pajhwok Afghan News that Latif Jawandi had many times visited him at his home. He said Jawandi offered him money, but he refused.
But Latif Jwandi rejected the allegation against him as baseless. “No member has been offered money. I don’t want to play with the fate of our voters by making it to the Senate through unfair means.”
Jawandi accused the second group of having received $250,000 from another person to elect him as a senatorial candidate, thus creating the problem.
Another council member in the second group, Janmir Zazi, rejected if they had received money from anyone and said some outsiders had been interfering into the council’s affairs.
Without naming anyone, he said, some circles were trying to create differences among the council members to serve their own interests.
IEC chief for Khost Mohammad Shafique Wafa denied if they were refusing to hold elections for administrative board members and the Senate representative.
“The problem lies with the council. They are not completing the required quorum to hold the elections,” he explained.
A resident of Khost City, Abdul Qadoos, urged the new council to elect an experienced, honest and able individual to the Meshrano Jirga.
“If anyone from the two rival groups makes it the Senate in return for money, the council will lose its credibility in the public eyes,” he said.
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