Vote recount, audit process completed: IEC
KABUL (Pajhwok): The UN-supervised recount and audit process supposed to sift out fraudulent votes from the June presidential election runoff has been completed, 50 days after it was launched, the Independent Election Commission (IEC) said on Friday.
Afghan election observers, candidates’ representatives and 201 foreign observers daily showed up from 7:00 am to 8:00 pm throughout the audit process since it began weeks ago.
Earlier, IEC officials had said that the audit would be completed in three weeks but the process was repeatedly suspended due to differences between the two presidential contenders.
The IEC told Pajhwok Afghan News the audit was formally completed on Thursday evening. At least 23,000 ballot boxes had been investigated and recounted.
After completion of technical process, the IEC would announce the election result, an IEC official said, but did not give an exact date as to when the technical process would be completed. However, he said that the result would be announced over the next few days.
President Hamid Karzai has directed the officials concerned to work in tandem for early completion of the process. But UN observers said that the process was likely to take yet another week, which would be followed by inauguration ceremony of the new president.
The United States on Thursday expressed optimism that both the Afghan presidential candidates would abide by the agreement they signed in August on a unity government.
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