Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Monday, August 19th, 2019

Present Political System is Dysfunctional: Afghan Leaders

Present Political System is Dysfunctional: Afghan Leaders

Centralized power has led to massive corruption, disenfranchisement of Afghan people

BERLIN, Germany – A delegation of Afghan leaders consist of Ahmed Zia Massoud, Chairman Afghanistan National Front, General Abdul Rashid Dostum, Leader of National Islamic Movement of Afghanistan, Haji Mohammad Mohaqiq, Leader of People´s Unity Party of Afghanistan and Amrullah Saleh, Former Director of Afghan National Security Directorate met with US congressmen in Berlin on Monday.

The Afghan delegation issued a joint declaration which stated that "We have supported the mission of the Coalition Forces in Afghanistan. It is our fervent desire that the Coalition Forces be successful. Yet, after the departure of the Coalition Forces, the enormous American, Coalition, and Afghan investment with their lives and treasure is currently in great peril of having been in vain.

Our concern is that the present political system is dysfunctional because all the power is centralized in a way that no American would tolerate in the United States. The current system has fatally concentrated decision-making to whoever is President of the country. The Afghan President appoints the governors of each province and district, the mayor of every town, every provincial chief of police, one third of the entire Senate, and even every judge in Afghanistan."

The declaration further said "This centralized power has led to massive corruption, disenfranchisement of a large segment of the Afghan people, obstacles to economic development, massive abuses of power, increasing political instability, poor governance, and a vast undermining of law and order."

"We call for a national dialogue on a revised Constitution to correct the inherent flaws in the present power structure by decentralizing the political system, making it more compatible with the diverse political, social and cultural nature of Afghanistan. The Afghan people deserve and need a parliamentary form of democracy instead of a personality-centered Presidential system," the leaders emphasized in a declaration.

"We firmly believe that any negotiation with the Taliban can only be acceptable, and therefore effective, if all parties to the conflict are involved in the process. The present form of discussions with the Taliban is flawed, as it excludes anti-Taliban Afghans.

It must be recalled that the Taliban extremists and their Al-Qaeda supporters were defeated by Afghans resisting extremism with minimal human embedded support from the United States and International community. The present negotiations with the Taliban fail to take into account the risks, sacrifices and legitimate interests of the Afghans who ended the brutal oppression of all Afghans," it said.

"In order to speed the withdrawal of international forces, the participants believe it is essential to strengthen regional and national institutions that are inclusive and represent the concerns of all the communities of Afghanistan," the declaration added.

If further enhanced, "The participants favor a change in the Electoral System from a Single Non Transferable Vote System to a nationally accepted variant of the Proportional Representation system with equal opportunities for both independent candidates, the political parties, or tribal representatives.

We also support the election of Governors and empowerment of provincial councils. Such elected Governors and provincial councils should also have authority for such things as creating budgets and generating revenue, overseeing police and healthcare, as well as establishing educational authority, if they so desire." (PR)