As hopes for the implementation of systematic reforms in Afghanistan’s election law gathers fresh momentum, members of a number of organizations announced on Monday they had finalized their nominees for the selection committee.
Civil society institutions, election mentoring groups, women’s rights groups and the constitution oversight commission said that in line with this, the selection committee should start work within a few days.
The much-anticipated process hit several deadlocks over the past two years with analysts accusing the political leadership of not having the will to reform the controversial law.
Election monitoring groups have said that the selection committee nominees have expressed readiness to conduct their duties in the presence of the media.
Based on President Ashraf Ghani’s legislative decree on electoral reforms, representatives from the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC), the constitution oversight commission, the Supreme Court, election monitoring groups and women’s rights groups will monitor the job of the selection committee.
“The work of the selection committee is political, if its members work with partiality and nominate desired individuals, the fate of the election commission will not be worse than in the past,” said political analyst Fida Mohammad Nazari.
Mari Akrami of the women’s rights groups and Mohammad Yousuf Rashid of the Free and Fair Election Forum of Afghanistan will represent their relevant bodies in the selection commission of election commissioners.
“After being officially informed, we nominated a member of the constitution oversight commission to represent the commission in the selection committee and the committee is expected to start its job soon,” said Mohammad Qasim Hashimzai, head of the constitution oversight commission.
However, calls have been made for experienced and qualified candidates to be selected for the commission in order to ensure best management and leadership practices.
“Fortunately this time the structure of the selection committee is much better, government has three representations including two members from the civil society institutions, this would have implications on the nature of work of the committee,” said Yousuf Rashid, representative of election monitoring groups for the selection committee.
The selection committee, after scrutinizing a list of candidates for election commissioners, will recommend the nominees.
Once the list of nominees is finalized, the president will choose up to seven nominees as commissioners for the Independent Election Commission (IEC) and five others for the Electoral Complaints Commission (ECC).