The fourth Coordination Meeting with Independent Election Commission

 

October 8, 2017

The Free & Fair Election Forum of Afghanistan (FEFA) held the fourth coordination meeting with representatives of the Independent Election Commission (IEC), the Independent Electoral Complaints Commission (IECC), the Independent Directorate of Local Governance (IDLG), Ministry of Women Affairs, The Election Watch Organization and FETWA.

At the beginning of the meeting, Mr. Mohammad Naeem Asghari, programs manager of FEFA explained the meeting agenda and requested participants of the meeting to present information about their working programs. Then, Mr. Abdul Badi Sayyad, member and spokesperson of IEC provided information about IEC performance and programs. He said IEC has done the following works so far:

  • Strengthening coordination and cooperation with the election observation organizations and signing MoU with these organizations;
  • Working on electoral constituencies;
  • Announcing and sharing the date for parliamentary election with the election observation organizations;
  • Working on verification of polling centers and sharing the setting time for sharing the list with the election relevant organizations;
  • Providing satisfactory replies to the demand of political groups;
  • Providing facilities for preparation of voters list and determining the kind of cooperation with the E-Tazkira Issuance Office and Ministry of Education;
  • Taking measures to employ permanent staff including heads of provincial offices;

Mr. Sayyad admired and thanked FEFA for the efforts it made toward creating coordination among electoral institutions and talked about bellow issues:

 

FEFA’s Coordination Meeting with IEC

September 13, 2017

The leadership of Free & Fair Election Forum of Afghanistan (FEFA) held a meeting with the members and chief electoral officer of the Independent Election Commission (IEC) to submit FEFA’s monitoring report from the second 100 days of IEC performance to IEC.

At the beginning of the meeting, the executive director of FEFA thanked organizers of the meeting and explained some parts of the report. He requested members of IEC to read the report and then share their views about it with FEFA. Similarly, he pointed out the previous recommendations made and presented to the IEC along with the report of IEC performance in first 100 days and criticized members of IEC for inattention to them. Given the IEC and stakeholders status and short time available to parliamentary and district council elections, he presented the new recommendations to IEC and requested them to consider the recommendations made by the electoral organizations.

 

FEFA met with representatives of telecommunication companies

 

13/ 09/ 2017

FEFA met with representatives of telecommunication companies at the conference hall of Afghanistan Telecom Regulatory Authority (ATRA). The representatives of Roshan, Etisalat, MTN, Afghan Telecome, Wasil Telecom and Afghan Wireless telecommunication companies attended this meeting. The objective of this meeting was getting information about telecommunication and internet coverage of these companies.

At the beginning of the meeting, Mohammad Farid Afghanzai, FEFA’s senior technical advisor and Rahmatullah Salehi, FEFA’s election officer thanked ATRA for helping in organization of this meeting and presented brief information about FEFA and said, “FEFA is intended to collect its election observation reports, from 34 province, through SMS and pay its observers through mobile. Therefore, we have the following questions:

  1. How many districts are under telecommunication and internet coverage?
  2. Are there regions which are not under coverage?
  3. In how many district, we can transfer money through mobile?

Then, the representatives of telecommunication companies thanked the representatives of FEFA for appearing in the meeting and appreciated FEFA for its intention to utilize internet and mobile for promoting the election observation process. They considered this intention a step toward standardizing national processes and bolstering the principles of democracy. Subsequently, they answered FEFA’s questions as below:

  1. The telecommunication companies can’t determine the number of districts they have covered since there are some regions in the districts which are not under coverage. If FEFA wants to acquire accurate statistics in this regard, it must share the location of polling centers with ATRA. Then ATRA will share the location of polling centers with the telecommunication companies and let FEFA know about their coverage.
  2. Some districts and regions are not under the coverage of telecommunication companies. There are even regions where satellite is not working.
  3. They acknowledged that transfer of money through mobile is possible but the telecommunication companies can’t pay to observers in the regions if there are no banks in the regions.

FEFA held the second coordination meeting with election stakeholders

Election Section of Free & Fair Election Forum of Afghanistan (FEFA) held the second coordination meeting with election stakeholders in FEFA’s conferences room on May 24, 2017 where the representatives of the Independent Election Commission, the Independent Local Governances Agency, the Central Statistics Organization, the E-Tazkira Office, Afghanistan Election Watch Organization, the Civil Society and Human Rights Network, Inclusive Election Association and the National Democratic Institute attended to discuss about the Independent Election Commission’s preparations for holding the upcoming election, miniaturization of electoral constituencies, assessment of polling stations and setting the electoral timeline.

The representative of each institution presented information about the performance of their institution and their preparation for cooperating with the Independent Election Commission for holding a free, fair and transparent election.

The representatives of civil society organizations shared their concerns and views over holding of parliamentary and district council elections with Mr. Bedar, member of the Independent Election Commission and said if the government continue its inattention toward holding of parliamentary and district council election, the Independent Election Commission must take a clear stance in this regard and share its stance with people. Then, Mr. Bedar said that if the government continue neglecting holding of election they will refer to people of Afghanistan and will make its decision about holding of election.

Coordination meeting with the representatives of the Independent Electoral Complaints Commission

Election Section of Free & Fair Election Forum of Afghanistan (FEFA) held a coordination meeting with the representatives of the Independent Electoral Complaints Commission, Central Statistics Organization, the Population Census Organization, E-Tazkira Office, General Directorate of Local Governance, Ministry of Women Affairs, Afghan Women Network, New Line Organization, Election Watch Organization and the National Democratic Institute to discuss about how to strengthen coordination among these institutions to play effective role in each electoral stages.

At the beginning of the meeting Mr. Naeem Asghari, programs manager of FEFA talked about the role and responsibilities of election stakeholders in electoral stages and subsequently the representatives of mentioned institutions presented detailed information about the role and responsibilities of their institution in electoral stages. Similarly, they appreciated FEFA’s election section for holding this meeting and said holding of such meetings can help the election stakeholders get more preparation for playing more effective role in electoral stages and take part in transparency of election process.

Participants of the meeting agreed to hold coordination meeting once in a month before the election process begin and twice in a month during the election process. They also decided to specify the agenda of meetings prior to the meetings and share with all members to get preparation and readiness to talk about the issues mentioned in agenda.

A review of first 100 days of IEC Performance

Free & Fair Election Forum of Afghanistan (FEFA) made serious attempts to track the implementation of promises made by the new members of electoral commissions on November 21, 2016 to share the their performance with people. The findings of this report was shared with IEC and citizens through declarations and attending media programs immediately after they happened but this report discuss the cases in details and present specific recommendations for each of them.
Election Planning
Lack of a codified strategic plan in IEC is the major problem of IEC and the new members of IEC haven’t been able to codify a strategic working plan since they appointed as members of IEC. Lack of codified plan in IEC led to postponement of electoral reform, public distrust on electoral commissions and ambiguity in determination of electoral timeline. The following issues indicate that IEC lack strategic work plan.
1. Holding of the first conference by members of the Independent Election Commission on November 28, 2016: Chairman of the Independent Election Commission promised in this conference to prepare the voters’ list, equipoise the polling centers, maintain the transparency of election, keep the impartiality and independent of commission, and make decision about electoral issues in presence of observers/monitors. But he didn’t take any measure to fulfil the promises he made

Declaration of Substantive Principles of Electoral Reforms

Electoral reform is an urgent need of Afghanistan which can help strengthen election, strengthen the role of political parties, establishment of a strong parliament and intact opposition. Electoral reform was a part of the political agreement on establishment of the National Unity Government (NUG) and the NUG pledged to rebuild public trust on election through implementation of electoral reform. Until the electoral system and administrations are not reformed the electoral challenges will repeat in future elections as well and lead to people distrust on election and electoral bodies.
Given the political agreement NUG was supposed to commence electoral reform as soon as it is established but unfortunately the electoral reform process faced a political deadlock and postponed for more than years after establishment of NUG. Finally, the first practical step toward implementation of electoral was taken on November 21, 2016 through appointment of new members of electoral commissions. Now, the new members of electoral commissions are responsible for implementation of next phases of electoral reform to pave the ground for holding a free and fair elections in the country.

Download The Report

The fifth consultative meeting about electoral reform

The Electoral Reform Advocacy Group held its fifth meeting to finalize draft of the Declaration of Substantive Principles of Electoral Reform. The representatives of political parties and civil society organizations attended this meeting to exchange views on the draft. After discussing and amendment of some articles of the draft-declaration, participants of meeting agreed to publish it in a press conference.

November 15, 2016

The Electoral Reform Advocacy Group held its first working meeting

The Electoral Reform Advocacy Group held its first working meeting on May 25, 2016 from 9 am to 3 pm in FEFA. The draft rules of procedure of the group and some articles of the proposal on electoral reform were discussed in this meeting. The participants exchanged views on rules of procedure of and decided to approve the rule of procedure in next meeting. Similarly, the participants expressed their views about the proposal on electoral reform.

The Fourth Electoral Reform Consultation Meeting

The Electoral Reform Advocacy Group which is made up from the political parties, civil society organizations and media organizations held its fourth consultation meeting to discuss the declaration of substantive principles of electoral reform and program of solidarity of political parties to lobby for implementation of electoral reform. The participants of meeting finalized the declaration of substantive principles of electoral reform after amending some of its articles and agreed with creation of solidarity among political parties to lobby for electoral reform. The participants of meeting recommended FEFA to hold a separate meeting with all political parties to discuss the plan establishment of Political Parties Coordination Council for Electoral Reform with them and invite them to join this council.
At the end of the meeting, members of the Electoral Reform Advocacy Group signed the internal rules of procedure of the group which was finalized in previous meeting of the group.

Kabul-July 28, 2016

FEFA

Kartee- 4 Hajari Najari Street, Behind Russian Cultural Institute, House#013

Tel:+93-799 -310664

Web site: www.fefa.org.af

    

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