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Wolesi Jirga wants next elections to be fair

Wolesi Jirga wants next elections to be fair

Jul 01, 2017 - 16:34

KABUL (Pajhwok): The Wolesi Jirga (WJ) or lower house of parliament on Saturday welcomed the announcement of a date for holding parliamentary and district council elections, but asked the election bodies to ensure the ballot was free and fair.

The Independent Election Commission (IEC) last month set a July 7, 2018 date for conducting the long-delayed elections.

Nader Shah Bahar, a lower house member from western Ghor province, said no step had been taken since the announcement of the election date to make sure the next polls would be fair and free.

“I hope all necessary arrangements will be put in place for the parliamentary and district council elections and past experiences may not be repeated,” he added.

Ali Akbar Qasami, a lawmaker from Ghazni province, welcomed the election date and said all elections related plans should be shared with the people.

“So far no practical step has been taken to make sure the upcoming elections will be free and fair.”

Zmarak Padkhabi, a lawmaker from Kabul province, suggested the parliamentary and presidential election should be held simultaneously to save money and resources.

He said there was no need to hold two elections in two years.

Under Article 83 of the Constitution, members of the Woelsi Irga are elected by the people through free, general, secret, and direct elections and their mandate ends on the 1st of Saratan of the fifth year after the elections.

The article adds the election of the Wolesi Jirga members shall be held within 30 to 60 days before the expiry of the term of the House of Representatives.