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CEO, deputies should have resigned before candidacies: Experts

CEO, deputies should have resigned before candidacies: Experts

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Jan 20, 2019 - 19:41

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): Political affairs experts say government officials including the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and his deputies should have resigned from their positions before officially registering in the presidential race.

CEO Abdullah registered as a presidential hopeful on Sunday with the election commission and his second deputy Mohammad Mohaqiq had registered as second vice presidential candidate with another presidential candidate Mohammad Hanif Atmar and first deputy joined President Ghani’s team.

Article 44 of the Election Law says: “Chief Justice and members of the Supreme Court and other judges, Attorney General, prosecutors and professional members of the Attorney General Office, ministers, advisor ministers, advisors to the President, deputy ministers, heads of agencies and their deputies, chairpersons and members of the independent  commissions, provincial governors and their deputies, military personnel of the Ministry of National Defense and Ministry of Interior Affairs and General Directorate of National Security and other ministries and bodies with military set-up,  civil servants, temporary or permanent staff of the Commission, Instructors of the governmental institutes of higher educationinfo-icon and members of the academic cadre of the Academy of Sciences of Afghanistaninfo-icon and others cannot nominate themselves for the elected seats mentioned in this law before resigning from their positions.”

Mohammad Haroon, a political affairs expert and university teacher, said the resignations of the president and his deputies were not important after their nomination to contest the elections but other government officials should resign from their posts in the light and spirit of article 44 of the election law.

He said in line with clause third of the article 44 of the election law, the CEO and his deputies should have resigned before their nomination because the CEO was an independent institution with a separate allocation of funds.

Clause three says: “Ministers, advisor ministers, advisors to the President, deputy ministers, heads of agencies and their deputies, chairpersons and members of the independent commissions, provincial governors and their deputies, district governors, ambassadors, and the staff of the political missions of the country resident abroad should resign before contesting elections.”

Wadir Safi, another political expert and university teacher, said the president should not resign because it would create a power vacuum. “But the law requires every government official who wants to contest the presidential polls to resign from his/her position.”

“The CEO, high ranking government officials and even ministers appear in electoral meetings or become part of an electoral team, which is against the law,” he said.

He said the CEO office was for two years and after that a Loya Jirgainfo-icon had to be called into session to decide its fate, a procedure which did not happen.

He said now CEO Abdullah was a presidential nominee and he should resign from his post.

When asked why the Independent Election Commission (IECinfo-icon) accepted the nomination of Abdullah, a reliable source within the IEC told Pajhwok Afghan News that the issue had been handed over the IEC legal team which would take a decision after evaluation.

CEO Abdullah did not comment why he did not resign from his post before nominating himself as a presidential hopeful.

nh/ma

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