ERC Welcomes President's Decree On Electoral Reforms

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The Electoral Reforms Commission (ERC) welcomed President Ashraf Ghani’s constitutional decree as the first step towards bringing electoral reforms.

“We welcome the signing of this constitutional decree and we hope that it will be the first step towards reforms,” said Mohammad Saleh Reqistani, a member of the ERC.

The decree will allow the election commissions’ selection committee to resume its activities, with some changes in its structure. Members of the committee were urged to remain impartial in their work.

Naeem Ayubzada, head of the Transparent Election Foundation of Afghanistan (TEFA), who is also a member of the selection committee, said impartiality of the committee in its activities should be ensured.

Ghani said parliamentary and district council elections must be held next year, after electoral reforms are brought.

“We remain strongly committed to bringing about electoral reforms and holding elections,” he said.

The president called on lawmakers to support the move.

Ghani said that he will also send a constitutional agenda about electoral reforms to parliament.

Previously, Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) had introduced Ahmad Zia Langari, and the Independent Administrative Reforms Commission had introduced Mohammad Nader Hotak as their representatives in the selection committee. Now, it is said they will be replaced.

Speaker of Wolesi Jirga (Lower House of Parliament), Abdul Rauf Ebrahimi, and Speaker of the Meshrano Jirga (Lower House of Parliament), Fazel Hadi Muslimyar, are said to be new members of the selection committee.

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