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WJ extends its own term amid criticism

WJ extends its own term amid criticism

Jun 20, 2015 - 17:37

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): Wolesi Jirgainfo-icon or lower house of parliament on Saturday approved continuation of its work beyond 22 June, amid criticism by some lawmakers calling the extension as illegal.

In line with constitution, the elections should have taken place by now, but has been postponed indefinitely by the Independent Election Commission (IECinfo-icon), citing lack of funds.

The Presidential Palace on Friday said in a statement the incumbent house could continue with its work until the results of the next elections were announced and new lawmakers introduced.

According the statement, the decision was taken following technical and financial issues, the need for electoral reforms and existence of security threats.

Abdul Rauf Ibrahimi, lower house speaker, told a general session the presidential palace would specify the elections date in one month.

Lawmaker Shukria Barekzai said: “I have severe objections over president’s statement. I wish the president had announced the elections date before this crisis.”

She said unless the new lawmakers were elected the incumbent parliament was legal and no other organ could take any decisions about its fate.

Ramazan Bashardost, MP from Kabul, said work of the house beyond June 22 was illegal. “The Wolesi Jirga’s term has been extended following some dealings.”

Majority of the lawmakers by raising green cards approved the statement, extending the Wolesi Jirga’s work until elections were held and new lawmakers were introduced.

Baktash Siawash, speaking after the session at a press conference, said the elections should have taken place and nobody had the right to extend current parliament’s term. “After June 22, anything the Wolesi Jirga does won’t have legitimacy.”

He said after June 22 he would not use any of the facilities of parliament but would only attend the sessions.

He added he had already returned his political passport, a computer and four weapons that were given to him by the house.



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