Incomplete quorum delays 2nd deputy speaker election
Earlier, Abdul Rauf Inami, a lawmaker from Badakhshan province, was elected as secretary to the lower house and Erfanullah Erfan as deputy secretary.
Nazir Ahmad Ahmadzai, Abdul Qayyum Sajjadi, Farida Hamidi, Ahmad Behzad, Farhad Siddiqui and Akbar Stanikzai ran for the second deputy speaker in previous rounds, but none could secure more than 50 percent of votes.
Speaker Abdul Rauf Ibrahimi had said the top two candidates -- Niamatullah Ghafari with 105 votes and Haji Nazir Ahmad Ahmadzai with 89 -- would compete in the fourth round of voting on Sunday (today).
Today, Ibrahimi announced Ghafari got 100 votes and Nasir Ahmadzai 95 votes, falling below the required threshold, but the voting between them went to an open voting stage based on the house internal procedures.
The speaker ruled the present lawmakers would approve the candidate winning the highest number of votes in his favour through the open balloting.
But after his announcement, a majority of the lawmakers left their seats and went out of the hall, with only 80 MPs remaining on their seats.
This led to a lack of quorum and Ibrahimi had to delay the open balloting till Monday.
Haji Zahir Qadir on Saturday retained the first deputy speaker slot after three rounds of voting.
He competed with Mirwais Yasini, Abdul Hafiz Mansoor and Abdul Qadir Zazai, Humayoon Humayoon and Zakria Zakriaran.
On Saturday, Hamidzai Lalai and Saleh Mohammad Saljuqi ran for the same position. But both Lalai (89 votes) and Saljuqi (68) fell short of the threshold. As many as 193 MPs took part in that voting.
After candidates’ consecutive failures to win, re-polling takes place between the two top vote-getters in accordance with the house’s internal procedures.
Humayoon, who had obtained 99 votes and Qadir 93 in the previous round, vied for the first deputy speaker’s position which went to Qadir, who bagged 138 votes against his rival.
Download “Pajhwok” mobile App, on your smartphone to read and access latest news, features, interviews, videos and photos about Afghanistan.