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Ghafari elected as 2nd deputy speaker of Wolesi Jirga

Ghafari elected as 2nd deputy speaker of Wolesi Jirga

Mar 14, 2016 - 11:58

KABUL (Pajhwok): The Wolesi Jirga (WJ) -- or the lower house of the parliament -- on Monday elected Niamatullah Ghafari, a lawmaker from southern Helmand province, as second deputy speaker.

A day earlier, the house failed to elect its second deputy speaker in a fourth round of voting due to lack of quorum.Ghafari and Nazir Ahmad Ahmadzai contested the election, winning 100 and 95 votes respectively.

Fatima Aziz, a legislator from northern Kunduz province, suggested the second deputy speaker’sslot should go to a woman. Other MPs warned of quitting if women were ignored for the position.

Nazir Ahmad Ahmadzai, acknowledging defeat, said he wanted to accept Ghafari as second deputy speaker in the best national interest and in keeping with democratic norms.

Speaker Abdul Rauf Ibrahimi said the acknowledgement of other lawmakers was also necessary. Of the 131 members present, 127 raised their green cards to repose confidence in Ghafari.

On Saturday, Zahir Qadir, former first deputy speaker of the lower house, was re-elected to the position.Earlier, Abdul Rauf Inami, a lawmaker from Badakhshan, was elected as secretary and Erfanullah Erfan as deputy secretary.