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TEFA accuses election commission of paving ground for fraud

AT News Report

KABUL: The Transparent Election Foundation of Afghanistan (TEFA), an electoral monitoring body, reject statement by the US embassy in Kabul that the presidential election was free of fraud as unrealistic, saying that the independent election commission was paving the ground for fraud.

It alleged on Wednesday that at most two million people voted in the September 28th presidential election.

Naeim Ayoubzada, head of the TEFA, said that the election commission lacks a mechanism to separate the credible and incredible votes.

The US embassy had earlier said that “our colleagues have lately visited the election commission and there is no place for fraud in the Afghan presidential election.”

“Lack of a mechanism to separate valid and invalid ballots, lack of a precise information about the exact number of voters, impartiality of the electoral commission, lack of monitors’ to the central survey and differences between the personnel of election and electoral complaint commissions are providing fraud,” Ayoubzada said.

“If the fraud was not prevented and it continues like this, we will not see an acceptable result.”

He also said of political pressures including foreign ambassadors’ meetings on the electoral bodies that could harm electoral transparency.

“Our findings show that nearly two million people with 21 per cent of them women voted in the September 28th presidential election,” said Soghra Saadat, program manager in TEFA.

She said that 721 polling centers were closed on the election day, while the independent election commission had said earlier that 461 centers were closed due to security threats.

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