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‘Parliamentary vote massively rigged in Kuchi constituency’

‘Parliamentary vote massively rigged in Kuchi constituency’

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Nov 08, 2018 - 19:37

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): Kuchiinfo-icon tribe candidates on Thursday said most of their people could not vote in the Oct 20-21 Wolesi Jirgainfo-icon elections and that the ballot was missive rigged in polling stations in their constituency.

Addressing a joint press conference in Kabul, the Kuchi candidates said election officials and the Kuchi directorate officials worked in favor of some specific candidates on the election day.

According to the Independent Election Commission (IECinfo-icon), 8.8 million people registered nationwide to vote in the long-delayed parliamentary elections and they include 168,000 Kuchi voters.

The whole of Afghanistaninfo-icon is a single election constituency for the Kuchi tribesmen. The Wolesi Jirga elections were contested by 36 Kuchi candidates, including eight womeninfo-icon.

Fifteen Kuchi candidates attended today’s press conference and alleged the elections were massively rigged in favor of some specific candidates.

Candidate Inayatullah Sehrai, who spoke on behalf of others, said the election process in the Kuchi tribe constituency remained fraudulent from the voter registration until the election day.

He said the Kuchi Coordination Directorate officials were complicit in the rigging.

Another Kuchi candidate Awal Gul Ahmadzai said the IEC’s weak administration, relocating polling stations to areas under control of powerful individuals and tampering with the results were problems the elections faced.

He claimed powerful individuals did not allow observers to enter polling stations in Kabul, Baghlan, Kandahar, Kapisa, Helmand, Logar and Zabul provinces.

He also provided some documents about alleged rigging and named two polling stations in Helmand province where ballot boxes were stuffed in the convenience of election commission officials.

Giving an example, Awal Gul said five ballot boxes were shifted from the Bagrami district to Kabul’s Mirwais Township in the limits of the sixth police district and were stuffed in favor of some candidates.

Another candidate played some videos in which ballot boxes were shown being stuffed and observers denied entry into a number of polling stations.

Pajhwok Afghan News obtained two videos which show a man is stamping ballot papers for a Kuchi candidate Mohammad Nabi in Ghazni Abad polling station in southeastern Khost province. The clip also shows a few persons stuffing ballot boxes for a Kuchi candidate.

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