FREE AND FAIR ELECTION FORUM OF AFGHANISTAN

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Survey on the Composition, Mandate & Duties of Independent Election Commission

The democratization process needs the political structure to be reformed taking the realities of the society into account. To this end, we have to increase public awareness and engage CSOs more in this process. Elections, as an important part of the democratization process are used to bring elected officials into power. In order to hold transparent elections, the institutions responsible for administering elections should be regulated clearly with a law. Noting the lessons FEFA learned from two presidential elections and two parliamentarian elections, it has been proven that some problems are directly related to structural and legal framework of the Independent Election Commission. Afghanistan’s electoral system will encounter serious problems in the future if these existing problems are not resolved. A major challenge is the lack of the Law on the Commission’s Composition, Duties and Mandate and this has undermined the credibility of this body. A Draft Law on the IEC’s Composition, Duties and Mandate was prepared by the Independent Election Commission and sent to the Wolesi Jirga for approval on 2008. The Wolesi Jirga amended some of its articles and ratified this draft. But the President rejected to endorse it. Because he declared that some of its articles are in contradiction with the Constitution. After this draft law was interpreted by the Supreme Court it resulted in its dismissal from the Wolesi Jirga’s agenda for a quite some time. Meanwhile, the Presidential Decree No. 23 dated on 05/11/1383 has been still in place. This decree includes very brief and general provisions on the IEC’s Composition, Duties and Mandate. There is no requirement ensuring the Commissioners impartiality and professional capacity in this Decree as all commissioners are appointed directly by the President for a 3 year mandate. Furthermore, in this decree no provision exist pertaining to the institution’s independence to spend its budget, commissioner’s immunity from legal prosecution, and the Commission’s obligations to allow participation and access of CSOs, free press and political parties To the information of IEC developments.

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8/29/2012

Date

FEFA

Publisher

Survey

Type

Election

Category

Contact Info

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Email: info@fefa.org.af

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