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Is another political gridlock looming?

Initial returns of presidential election have not only failed to end electoral deadlock, but it is feared the poll results may perhaps herald a new beginning to a new national crisis and exacerbate post-election political turmoil.

Presidential candidates who already harbor extreme doubts about the transparency of the electoral system and the initial results are even much less likely to accept the incumbent Ashraf Ghani to stay in power for another half a decade. They argue that preliminary election outcome is the outset of a new crisis and suggest a ‘coalition government’.

Leading candidates including the incumbent chief executive Abdullah Abdullah, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, and former spymaster Rahmatullah Nabil have already voiced their disapproval of the initial election returns.

Ahmad Vali Masoud, presidential candidate, says election result is highly marred by fraudulent votes which had been tallied against oft-repeated calls for invalidation. He faults election commission for bias and fraud and warns of action against any electoral flaws.

Their argument is less likely to produce a solution to the long, dragged-out electoral dispute and prevent from a political crisis. The idea of coalition government is a revised version of that of the government of national unity which last for five years during which Afghanistan had two presidents. Not only will this not present a solution, but this secessionist idea will deepen schism and divisions. Coalition government will pave the way for a group of supremacist and egocentric people who will never accept the rule of others. Such a political system is messy and intricate in which there will be no subordination and leadership. This government system is unrealistic and cannot be implemented. It’s just a tool in the hands of unscrupulous individual who seek a share in power and government.

Nonetheless this proposition, a crisis seems inevitable in the wake of the initial election results amid a myriad electoral complaints that have piled up. Prospects of a turmoil will fade if the electoral complaints commission scraps fraudulent votes, which will lead the election to a runoff. That, however, is a shaky scenario per se. In the face of the tumultuous security situation, corruption, incapability and management inertia of the election commission, a second round of polls will be taking months to hold, one which will be highly likely overshadowed by vote rigging and fraud.

A scenario in which the incumbent president Ashraf Ghani would form the next government seems far, so does for Abdullah Abdullah. Abdullah will seemingly orchestrate a crisis himself.

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