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MPs want to be consulted, reject jirga on BSA

MPs want to be consulted, reject jirga on BSA

Jul 15, 2013 - 15:35

KABULinfo-icon (PANinfo-icon): Despite denials from the Presidential Palace, some lawmakers on Monday reiterated the government planned to convene a jirgainfo-icon on extending its tenure and amending the constitution.

Whatever the objective behind the grand tribal forum, a number of Wolesi Jirgainfo-icon members asked the government to consult the parliament instead of arranging the traditional assembly.

First Deputy Speaker Mirwais Yasini, who chaired Monday’s session, argued there was no mention of the traditional jirga in the constitution and hence questions about its legality.

Yasini believed arranging any forum other than a Loya Jirgainfo-icon, which enjoyed constitutional sanction, would amount to ignoring the parliament’s role.

“Holding a traditional jirga is meant to influence the legislature. The parliament should be consulted on the issue the government wants to place before the proposed gathering,” he remarked.

Instead of wasting time on such exercises, the government should control the worsening law and order situation in the country, the deputy speaker observed.

A woman public representative from Kabul insisted the jirga was planned to amend the basic law and keep the government in power.

Shukria Barakzai told the president to avoid making attempts at perpetuating his rule and ensure an orderly transfer of power through inclusive elections.

Her colleague from northwestern Faryab province, Naqibullah Faiq, said the jirga would be asked for its opinion on the Bilateral Security Agreement with the US and amendments to the constitution.

A day earlier, the chief presidential spokesman scotched rumours regarding plans to convene a jirga on extending the government’s tenure. Aimal Faizi hunted the jirga might be called into session to take a decision on BSA.

But he rejected as groundless remarks from leaders of the Coordination Council of political parties and coalitions that Karzai was trying to delay next year’s presidential elections.





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