According to the decree, the president has ordered the selection committee to resume its activities immediately.
The President’s Office in a statement said late on Saturday that the decree was issued by President Ghani after no individual was found eligible from the former shortlisted applicants to be well qualified for the vacant position.
However, the president’s decree regarding the resumption of the selection committee’s work was being considered “illegal.”
“The committee has presented the list of 21 candidates for the Election Commission and 15 others for Electoral Complains Commission to the President’s Office and there is no legal justification for the committee to resume its work,” said Yusuf Rashid, a member of the IEC Selection Committee.
The election watchdog also criticized the decree, saying the president’s order is against the Electoral Law.
“Legally, this decree of the president is in contrary to the article 14 and 16 of the Electoral Law and the selection committee’s work has ended when it has sent the list [of applicants] to the Presidential Palace,” said Jandad Spinghar, Head of the Free and Fair Elections Foundation (FEFA).
This comes as President Ghani removed Najibullah Ahmadzai, the Head of the Election Commission, and one of the members of the commission on November 15.