Coordination meeting with electoral stakeholders on 3/18/2019
The Free and Fair Election Forum of Afghanistan (FEFA) hosted the eighth Coordination Meeting between Election Stakeholder Institutions on 18 March 2019 at the conference hall of this institution. The meeting was attended by a total of 20 representatives of the institutions, such as the Independent Election Commission, the Electoral Complaints Commission, and the Central Statistics Organization, Minister of Women’s Affairs Civil Society Organization. However, representatives of the Ministry of Interior, Central Statistics Organization and IDLG did not attend the meeting despite repeated calls. In The beginning of the meeting, Engineer Asghari, responsible for the FEFA- Electoral Program Manager welcomed the participants, outlined the goals and objectives of the meeting, and asked the participants to provide information about their activities and progress made in the field of election. Beside ach of the representatives of electoral relevant stakeholders provided information their activities and progress made their work, they also responded to the concerns and questions of the participants of the meeting. According to the agenda, initially, Ms. Rahima Zarifi, the commissioner of the Independent Election Commission, was the first speaker of this meeting. She spoke around the issues posed in the sessions, saying that the appointment of new commissioners on March 2, 2019 was because government deemed it necessary, during the time things such as conducting internal elections to elect the chairman, deputy and secretary of the Independent Election Commission were elected. Meanwhile, the IEC new team decided together to work on the important priorities of the Independent Election Commission (IEC).
. Independent Election Commission . Electoral Complaints Commissio . Central Statistics Organization . Civil Society Organization.
• Improving coordination and cooperation between the Election stakeholder body; • Identifying the challenges and problems laying ahead of the election; • Obtaining information on the activities of relevant electoral stakeholders;
"The Independent Election Commission faces two major challenges, Ms. Zarifi said. The first challenge was regarding the elapsed calendar of the upcoming election, for example, on the First of March 2019, was the time for the voters registration for the parliamentary elections in Ghazni province, provincial council, district council elections and the presidential election that had to be completed, but we were elected as Independent Election Commissioners on the 3rd of March, so this issue needed a reconsideration. The other challenge is lack of sufficient time to carry out and advance the work and programs timely. We took responsibility for the leadership and management of the election commission, when precisely four months and a few days, according to the calendar, we remained to the due time of the presidential election. We are determined to work in concert to do our work accurately and properly, regardless of day and night, to compensate for the work that should have been done in its designated time. " Subsequently Ms. Zarifi outlined that there was a very good coordination between the electoral commissions and said that coordination could pave the way for better management of the election. Then Dr. Eliasi, a member of the Electoral Complaints Commission, spoke on the subject and stating that before I proceed to the issues listed in the agenda for the Electoral Complaints Commission, it is worth to mention the four principles that these days, have taken place compare to the previous commission: Principle 1: The coordination and empathy between the electoral commissions and the electoral institutions was broken, but now we witness improvement in this coordination and empathy. Principle 2: In the past, not only there was no coordination between the two commissions, but also between commission members. Which means as a whole, there was no coordination between the Commissioners, the heads of secretariats, the presidents and the staff of the Commission, but, thankfully, this coordination has now been established at the level of the leadership of the commissions and the secretaries of the commissions, which is pleasing. Principle 3: There is also a good coordination between the election commissions and political parties, in the past the deterioration of relations between the electoral commissions and political parties was clearly seen. Principle 4: The fourth principle that has happened is that people seem to be psychologically optimistic at least through the media and feel that perhaps the new leadership of the commissions can hold the upcoming election in a good manner, observe the speed, accuracy, and transparency better than previous outcomes.
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