Wolesi Jirga urged to approve electoral reform decree
KABUL (Pajhwok): Some political parties and civil society groups on Sunday called on the Wolesi Jirga to approve the presidential legislative decree on electoral reform and warned if the decree was rejected, the country might plunge into a political crisis.
President Ashraf Ghani issued a second legislative decree on electoral reform in March after his first decree was rejected by the Wolesi Jirga or lower house parliament.
However, the second degree is yet to be debated at the house. Wolesi Jirga speaker last week asked lawmakers to give their nod to the presidential decree on electoral reform.
Mohammad Naeem Ayoubzada, head of the Transparent Election Foundation (TEFA), accused the lower house of taking no interest in the decree.
He said: “The Wolesi Jirga earlier rejected the presidential decree and we fear this time too some 50 percent lawmakers are unwilling to approve the second decree despite having no legal issues.”
He said the Wolesi Jirga could not delay the approval or rejection of a legal document for more than a month. He asked lawmaker to approve the decree as soon as possible.
Humera Haqmal, women’s rights activist, said the unity government should honour its pledges about electoral reform. She lamented despite the passage of 20 months since the unity government came into being, electoral reform could not be executed.
She believed Afghanistan might go into turmoil if the presidential decree was not approved and reforms were not implemented.
Electoral reform is one of the key components of the unity government deal between then presidential candidates Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah after 2014 disputed election.
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