In accord with the electoral law of Afghanistan the Independent Election Commission is committed to conducting the Wolesi Jirga and District Council elections within 1397 (read 2018-19) and to providing the opportunity of exercising the right to vote to all persons eligible to vote throughout the country. At the same time the Independent Election Commission is committed to bring reforms to the electoral process as per its mandate and with the ultimate goal to ensure democratic, transparent and inclusive elections.
In fact, following continued consultations with relevant stakeholders it was retained that a new registration system for voters, based on citizenship Tazkira and polling center-based voters’ list, was the only way forward to ensure integrity of the process and contributing to build public trust. However, such consultation for the final decision against viable options absorbed a significant amount of time, while experiencing several deadlocks, in particular with regard to biometric voter registration option, which was considered not feasible in time for 2018 elections.
- Candidates registration may not take place before a substantial number of people had a chance to register, which means when registration would reach its final phase (village level)
- According to the law, complaint process related to candidate registration should be given sufficient time (33 working days) before finalizing the candidates list. Only then ballots may be produced.
- Production and delivery of ballots, based on previous experience takes about six weeks, followed by packaging and distribution up to polling centers which takes additional six weeks.
Considering all above, the Independent Election Commission of Afghanistan came to conclusion that the new date for election will be 20th October 2018.
The IEC is pleased to confirm that voter registration is starting on 14th April with the opening of registration centers in the provincial capitals. Registration staff has been recruited and training is ongoing. Movement of material has started according to the plan. In conjunction the IEC has launched a voter information campaign through the media and grassroots outreach activities will take place throughout the registration process.
IEC would like to take this opportunity to call all fellow Afghans to obtain Tazkira if they don’t have one and go and register at their polling center.