National Citizens' Movement for Free Elections (Namfrel)

BANTAY NG BAYAN

It’s election day. Polls open in less than two hours.

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Source: IEC

How and Where to Vote?

Who can vote? All registered Afghans (who is at least 18 years of age, has Afghan citizenship, has not been deprived from his/her civil or political rights by a court of competent jurisdiction) with valid voter ID card will have the right to vote in elections.

Identification. Individuals with voter registration cards issued in 2003, 04, 05, 08 and 2010 are allowed to vote. Polling station staff checks for ink (to ensure individuals have not already voted), for eligibility, and for identity.

Where to vote. Registered voters can vote in the province where they are resident. However if a voter is Kuchi, he/she is allowed to vote only in Parliamentary and Presidential list around all the provinces, as all the country is a pooling center for Kochis.

When to vote. Polling centers are opening for one day based on each Election timeline, after that specific period, no additional voters are permitted to join the queue.

At the polling center. Within a polling centre, there are male and female polling stations. In some centers there are also stations for Kuchis. In some provinces, the IEC establishes specific polling centers for Kuchis.

Not more than 600 voters are allowed to vote in any given polling station.

Polling Staff. Polling staff, under the supervision of the District Field Coordinators, are the officials responsible for running centers/stations and processing voters.

Polling Station Staff. Each polling station consists of the following staff members:

Polling Station Chairperson (PSC);
Identification/Inking Officer;
Ballot Paper Issuer; and,
Ballot Box Controller.
Polling Centre Staff. Consists of:

Polling Centre Manager;
Assistant Polling Centre Manager (for centres with 12 or more polling stations); and,
Queue Controllers (1-4).
Observers, media, candidate/party agents who are accredited by the IEC may also be present in the polling center.

While voting. Each voter must vote in person. Voting on behalf of another person is not permitted. Each voter must mark his/her ballots in secret behind the voting screen provided for this purpose. Family or group voting, where more than one person is behind the voting screen at a time, is not permitted. The elderly, people with disabilities, nursing and pregnant women are given preference in the polling center. Finally, once a voter has cast a ballot he or she must leave the polling station.

Counting and Tallying the Votes

Counting the ballots in the elections takes place immediately upon the conclusion of polling at the polling station. Each polling station chairperson is responsible for organising the count in his/her respective polling station.

Persons allowed to witness the count

Persons who may enter or remain for the count are:

Polling officials;
IEC officials with special duties relating to polling and counting;
Persons introduced by ECC;
Accredited agents of political parties, coalitions and independent candidates;
Accredited electoral observers, national and international, language assistants of international observers;
Accredited members of the media with valid press cards; and
Special guests.

Special Needs Voting

The IEC recognizes the need to facilitate access to polling for voters with special needs, including members of the Afghan National Army, police, internally displaced persons, prisoners (who have not been deprived from their civil and political rights by a court of law), or people that are hospitalized. In order to facilitate access to polling for those people, the IEC adds polling stations to existing polling centers.

Challenges and Complaints

The Electoral Complaints Commission is responsible for adjudicating challenges to candidates and complaints about the electoral process. The ECC is a temporary body which is established prior to an election and dissolves no later than one month following announcement of final results.

Challenges or complaints can be submitted at the headquarters in Kabul or any of the provincial offices. In addition, each provincial office and the ECC itself has the power to investigate a matter on its own initiative, i.e. without first receiving a complaint.

The ECC derives its mandate from the Electoral Law.

Written by namfrel

September 18, 2010 at 9:10 am

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