Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Saturday, November 17th, 2018

Around 4 Million People Voted, Says IEC Chief

Around 4 Million People Voted, Says IEC Chief

KABUL - the chairman of the Independent Election Commission of Afghanistan (IEC) Abdul Badi Sayyad on Monday said that almost four million Afghans in 32 provinces voted during the two days of elections in the country.
Sayyad said 4,640 election centers opened on Saturday and Sunday and that currently ballot boxes are being transferred to Kabul.
He said that a committee has been established to probe problems around the use of the biometric system over elections.
“The committee will probe all irregularities reported including voter list problems, the fact many polling stations did not open, the problems around the biometric system and that if people are found to have been negligent they will be prosecuted,” he said.
Sayyad said the commission will prepare a detailed report on all polling stations, violations and negligence reported on election day.
“The commission will investigate and punish perpetrators involved in violations on the day of elections. The commission will also probe fraud and claims of vote-rigging.
The election commission is also working with electoral complaints commission about fraud and violations and necessary measures will be taken in line with the law,” added Sayyad.
On the claims of incompetency by the IEC during the day of elections, the IEC chief said: “the elections had been a success and "we wrapped up a great mission in little time."
He said this had been a learning curve for the commission for future elections.
Sayyad also said: “The commission will soon start preparing for presidential elections.”
On vote-rigging claims, the IEC chief called on those people, who have credible evidence to back up their claims of vote-rigging, to contact the complaints commission.
He also said the commission would meet to discuss reports that biometric devices were not used in some areas.
He said that women’s participation in elections had been around 33 percent. 
5,333 Complaints Lodged
Figures by the Independent Electoral Complaints Commission (IECC) show that 5,333 complaints were lodged with the commission on the first day of parliamentary elections.
Addressing a press conference on Sunday, the IECC spokesman Ali Reza Rouhani said 1,700 complaints have been lodged in Kabul – which had the highest number so far but said many of these are not necessarily complaints but rather reports of problems experienced.
According to him, 15 complaints were lodged in Khost – which had the lowest number of complaints compared with other provinces. 
He acknowledged that there are technical problems relating to the elections but said that the participation of women in the elections was very high.
The IECC spokesman said a number of  biometric devices are not working at some centers in Kabul and in other provinces, including a center in the west of Kabul.
He said people have 48 hours to send their complaints to the commission on the electoral process. (Tolo news)