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Afghan women arrive to cast their vote during parliamentary elections at a polling station in Kabul, Afghanistan, October 20, 2018. REUTERS/Mohammad Ismail

Editorial: Insecurity, fraud undermine elections credibility

The Afghan masses are only five days away from a historic opportunity to elect new President of Afghanistan through a democratic system of voting. 9.6 people have registered to vote. Indeed, one of the most critical ways that individuals can influence governmental decision-making is through voting. Voting is a formal expression of freedom to elect future leader of the country. Afghans vote because they want Elected-President to rule based on the will of the people as expressed in periodic and genuine elections. It is fundamental right of every eligible Afghans to vote. Conscious of the fact that each state has the sovereign right, in accordance with the will of its people, freely to choose and develop its own political, social, economic and cultural systems without interference by other states. Recognizing that the establishment and strengthening of democratic processes and institutions is the common responsibility of governments, the electorate and organized political forces, that periodic and genuine elections are a necessary. Therefore, people and presidential candidates asked for free and fair elections, and demand from related originations to adopt clear stance in regard. In latest parliamentary, and 2014 presidential elections had showed how fraudulent elections it was. Though former independent election commissioners are dismissed and some of them sentenced to jail, but this will not resolve any problem rather to have a strong resolve to conduct a fire and free polls. Moreover, the government have failed in both ways, one to bring reform in the Independent Election Commission, and second to provide security for elections. People in provinces have already expressed their anxiety over deterioration of security, where it is better to stay at home in election day rather go to polling stations to vote in a fear atmosphere. Even in Kabul people are concern about security on the day of voting. The point to frequent terrorist attacks in Afghan cities and the Taliban’s threat to targeted polling stations could be taken as major impediments to voting in the vast country ahead of the September 28 election. Due to insecurity half of the 4,942 voting centers would be likely closed on the day of election. High security threats would cause people in 50 percent of the areas to be deprived from going to ballot boxes and this would overshadow the process. With this uncertainty that no one wants to be killed while joining the process of voting due security threats, where its credibility is already under question, why one should go for voting. It is better for the government and related organizations to reconsider and if possible, they should delay the election until a proper time where peace be resorted and all the Afghans across the country be able to exercise their fundamental rights of voting.

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