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Fair elections to help overcome current crisis: Parties

Fair elections to help overcome current crisis: Parties

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On
Feb 14, 2018 - 21:16

KABUL (Pajhwok): A number of political parties on Wednesday called for this year’s parliamentary elections to be held as scheduled, saying only elections could relieve Afghanistan from its current crisis and challenges.

The demand was echoed during a meeting between Independent Election Commission (IEC) members and representatives from political parties, civil society, the United Nations and foreign embassies in Kabul.

The meeting conferred on plans of political parties and election institutes, political parties role in elections, distribution of e-ID cards for preparing voter lists.

Ghairat Bahir, head of political committee of Hezb-i-Islami Afghanistan (HIA), who attended the meeting, demanded the Wolesi Jirga and district council elections on the given date and said he saw no reason for the votes to be delayed.

He believed elections could help end the conflict because the vote was the only way to reach power. Polls would help end the mindset of reaching power through illegal ways.

Noor Rahman Akhlaqi, a senior member of Jamiat-i-Islami Afghanistan (JIA), said only elections could rescue Afghanistan from its current challenges. He said no other alternative except elections was acceptable to JIA.

Babur Farahmand, a member of Junbish-i-Islami Afghanistan party, said, “Junbish-i-Islami Afghanistan strongly supports changing the majority election system to proportional election system in which the role of political parties is prime and certain.”

On the other hand, Mohammad Naim Ayubzada, head of Transparent Election Foundation of Afghanistan (TEFA), said today’s IEC meeting was not result-oriented.

“We expected the result of IEC performance and specification of its programs about elections, but unfortunately many issues are still vague,” he said.

However, IEC chief Abdul Baday Sayyad stressed the importance of political parties’ role in elections and said the commission members respected views and suggestions of political parties and election institutes.

He also said transparent elections were the only way of overcoming the current crisis. “Fighting and suicide bombings are no solution and no one can win through this way, only elections can put an end to our problems,” he concluded.

mds/ma