Afghanistan’s Independent Election Commission (IEC) has submitted a comprehensive list of candidates for the position of the Commission’s Secretariat Chief to President’s office, an official said Wednesday.
“We have sent a comprehensive list of candidates with excellent criteria who can run this technical and operational position to the presidential palace,” said Hafizullah Hashimi a commissioner of the IEC.
Last week, President Ashraf Ghani rejected all shortlisted candidates for the position of the IEC Secretariat and urged IEC to introduce new faces.
According to the electoral law, IEC is allowed to introduce only three shortlisted candidates for the position and not more than that.
Electoral observers called the recent move an act beyond the law.
“Unfortunately, IEC surrendered to an illegal request, the request was illegal and if the commission is giving a positive response that will be illegal as well. This is showing the culture of violating the electoral law,” said Yousuf Rasheed, the head of Free and Fair Election Forum of Afghanistan (FEFA).
“IEC is accepting every demand of the government and introduction of more candidates is against the law,” said Sughra Sadat, the spokesperson of Transparent Election Foundation of Afghanistan (TEFA).
The head of IEC Secretariat, who will be appointed by the President from among professionals requested by the IEC, is responsible for all aspects of day-to-day IEC operations.