Electoral reform panel starts recording people’s views
KANDAHAR CITY (Pajhwok): Embarking on a series of visits to provinces, Electoral Reform Commission chief Shah Sultan Akefi on Sunday said people’s views and suggestions were crucial to fixing the system.
Akefi, who arrived in the capital of southern Kandahar province, met Deputy Governor Abdul Ali Shamsi. He visited Kandahar to meet people, tribal elders, religious scholars and civil society activists and listen to their views on electoral reforms.
“For reforms in the electoral system, people’s views and proposals are very important,” he said, adding the panel would visit different provinces in this regard.
The commission chief said they had started consulting election observers, the international community, political parties and others on electoral reforms since a week.
Akefi said they wanted to carry forward their activities in a precise manner and bring about such credible reforms that barred government leaders from appointing or removing electoral commissions’ officials.
“Our commission has started work about two weeks ago. We are trying to collect views, proposals and suggestions in three months and later produce them before the government leadership,” Akefi said.
He said the suggestions they had collected during the past two weeks recommended the launch of nationwide census, preparing a voter list, expediting the distribution of electronic identity cards and appointing impartial individuals in the electoral bodies.
Akefi said he would remain in Kandahar for the next two days to meet influential figures, the youth, elders, women, journalists and civil society activists and record their views, which he promised to be incorporated in bringing electoral reforms.
The deputy governor called elections a national process and said it was important to listen to people’s views for the sake of transparency in the process.
Abdul Ali Shamsi said if the electoral reform commission performed its job impartially, it would help restore people’s trust in elections and would strengthen democracy.
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