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Afghan election: US calls for transparency & timeliness

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KA BUL: A top US diplomat in Kabul has underscored the need for transparency in the electoral process, including the final results.

“We strongly support the efforts of the election complaints commission to complete its work in a transparent, fair, and timely manner. Impartiality and consistency will deliver the credible result voters in Afghanistan expect and deserve,” the US charge d’affaires Ross Wilson tweeted.

Protecting democracy requires participation, respect for laws, and vigilance. As they complete the electoral process, we call on independent election commission and electoral complaints commission to work in a coordinated and transparent manner to give voters confidence in the outcome, he added.

He called on all parties that should work within the electoral process, adhere to the Code of Conduct they signed, and refrain from using any extralegal actions.

According to him, the two electoral bodies have a responsibility to Afghan voters, candidates and campaigns do as well. “They must respect the process so the final election result can be determined in an orderly manner.”

He further tweeted; Integrity of the process is the priority in all elections. “Voters must have confidence in the outcome so whoever leads the next government can build consensus, and all Afghans can work together for peace and the national interest.

Afghanistan’s election complaints commission recently had said that its decision for ballot recount of more than 2,500 polling stations marred by fraud has met with opposition, leaving the recount in tatters.

The commission’s spokesperson, Mohammad Reza Fayyaz, has said that after adjudication of complaints and assessment of appeals, provincial offices of the commission had voted for a recount of ballots in 2,555 polling stations. He said the work is still ongoing on adjudication of appeals of candidates.

The prolonged election process has become very irritating in the face of unreasoned delays and fabricated challenges. Every single process in the elections is time-consuming, contributing to a lengthening of the election for more than four months.

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