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MP predicts 6-month delay in parliamentary vote

MP predicts 6-month delay in parliamentary vote

Mar 16, 2015 - 22:44

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): The Wolesi Jirgainfo-icon’s second deputy speaker on Monday said lawmakers would not let the government dissolve the national assembly until the electoral system was reformed.

Nazir Ahmad Ahmadzai told reporters inside the assembly hall that the government should introduce reforms in the two electoral bodies at the earliest. He said without reforms, free and fair elections were not possible in Afghanistaninfo-icon.

He warned the lower house members would not let the assembly to be dissolved until the government guaranteed free and fair parliamentary polls.

To a question about the assembly’s credibility beyond its term, he said the august house played the role of A bridge between the masses and the government.

He said the MPs should stay on their seats for the sake of electoral reforms, believing the government system was not mature enough to be left alone.

Under Article 83 of the Constitution the Wolesi Jirga’s five-year term ends on June 2 and elections for a new parliament should be called one or two months before the incumbent parliament’s term is over. 

A Wolesi Jirga member, who wished not to be named, told Pajhwok Afghan News the upcoming parliamentary polls were impossible to be held on schedule.

He said government officials had told them the parliamentary ballot could be postponed for a period of six months. 

Earlier, Independent Election Commission (IECinfo-icon) chief Ahmad Yusuf Nuristani had cited a lack of funds to hold the parliamentary vote on schedule. He also accused the lower house of showing little interest in the conduct of the elections. 

At today’s session, Wolesi Jirga members discussed electoral reforms. Shekiba Hashimi, a lawmaker from Kandahar province, urged swift implementation of electoral reforms in order to enable more people to exercise their right to enfranchise and restore people’s trust in the system.

Abdul Qadir Zazai from Kabul held similar views. He said the president and the chief executive officer (CEO) should appoint neutral individuals as commissioners on the election commission to ensure that future elections were free and fair.


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