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Poll panel gears up to send biometric devices to provinces

AT-The Independent Election Commission (IEC) said on Wednesday that it has hitherto received more than 13,000 biometric devices and that it is prepping to send those electronic voting devices to provinces.

The spokesman of the poll panel, Hafizullah Hashimi, told newsmen on Wednesday that 250 people have been hired to undertake the process of transferring the electronic devices to provinces today.

The election commission earlier announced that a total of 22,000 devices are required to wage biometric voting across the country, of which 13,000 have been obtained with the rest inbound.

Hashimi asserted that the process of dispatching electronic devices to the provinces will hit snags if they didn’t obtain them on stipulated dates.

The October ballots had initially been designed to be held with the conventional method of voting. But the polls commission ruled a fortnight ago to roll out biometric-based voting system. The decision came in the aftermath of consistent defiance by political parties – which were nudging the country towards chaos – who demanded biometric system and warned to boycott elections and sabotage the entire process if their pleas were unmet.

The independent election commission’s spokesperson Hashimi however said they are committed to orchestrating the election on its slated schedule and not marred by fraud.

He asserted that eight million people have been registered to vote in the coming parliamentary election.

He called upon the armed forces of the country to maintain tougher measures to ensure security for voters and candidates during the electioneering period; a campaign which has been hammered by constant security threats.

Candidates embarked upon a perilous campaigning on Friday amid dangerous situations all over the country, with the militants hell-bound for sabotaging the process and murdering the contenders. A suicide bomber struck a campaign gathering in Kama district of eastern Nangarhar province on Tuesday afternoon, killing 14 and wounding 50 others.

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