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Courts to decide cases of electoral crimes: AGO

Courts to decide cases of electoral crimes: AGO

Sep 24, 2017 - 23:38

KABUL (Pajhwok): Attorney General Farid Hamidi on Sunday said people committing electoral crimes would be legally prosecuted for the first time under the country’s election law.

Hamidi briefed participants of the seventh meeting of the Forum of Election Management Bodies of South Asia (FEMBoSA), about clauses recently added to the Election Law about electoral crimes. He said legal action against offenders would reduce rigging and increase transparency.

He dubbed the addition of electoral crimes related clauses to the Election Law “a huge achievement”, says: “Anyone who violates election regulations would be referred to the AGO and would face legal action.”

The AG informed about the launch of a training program for prosecutors regarding electoral offenses, saying all cases of electoral crimes would be addressed by the AGO and courts.

Hamidi called strengthening democracy vital for ensuring peace and stability in the country, saying without a strengthened democracy and participation in elections; combating terrorism and extremism was impossible in the region.

Najibullah Ahmadzai, head of the Independent Election Commission (IEC), also spoke on the occasion, saying the meeting was aimed at improving coordination, discussing problems, finding solutions and gradually handing over FEMBoSA meetings chairmanship to Afghanistan.

He said such meetings in Afghanistan were a good opportunity because South Asian countries had a lot of expertise in elections. “We are happy to be member of the forum and the IEC will try to learn from their experiences. This session would expand our relations and coordination.”

He went on to say that the meeting would discuss solutions to electoral problems, collective participation and continued support of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC). “This meeting helps the IEC in resolving problems for the upcoming elections.”

It’s pertinent to mention here that Afghanistan was given FEMBoSA chairmanship for one year for the first time.

FEMBoSA contains SAARC member countries -- Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka -- and was established in 2010 in Bangladesh.