National Citizens' Movement for Free Elections (Namfrel)

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IEC election day statements

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Notes by Democracy International on the IEC‘s two election day press conferences

Midday pres conference notes

Fazal Ahmad Manawi, the chairman of Afghanistan’s Independent Election Commission, held a midday press conference to discuss the situation on the Election Day so far.

Polling Center Logistics

Manawi said that while small incidents have been reported around the country related to poll openings, the IEC had been able to resolve them. As an example, he said that some ballot papers intended for Badghis province had gone to Bamiyan province and vice versa, but that the IEC had used reserve ballots in the two provinces to address the issue.

Issues have also been reported with hole-punchers, which polling center staff are supposed to use to invalidate voter cards. It was reported that some of these do not work or some stations had not received the punches. The IEC directed its staff to use scissors instead.

Questions have also been raised about the quality of ink, with allegations in local and internationa media that it can be removed by use of chemicals, or there are two kinds of ink being used. Manawi stressed that the ink had been provided by the United Nations Development Program and had received a quality check from Kabul University laboratories, and expressed satisfaction with its quality. Manawi said ink might disappear temporarily with the use of chemicals, but that it would reappear on the finger after a little time and even with a darker complexion.

Polling Center Openings

Manawi noted that the IEC had planned to open about 5816 polling centers across the country, and said that it had opened 5,355 polling centers as of the morning.

18,611 polling stations were supposed to open; the IEC confirmed the opening of 17,045 polling stations, or about 92% of all stations. The IEC said it did not have information about the remaining 8% of stations, and said further details and a final report would be released at the end of the day.

Afternoon press conference notes

Fazal Ahmad Manawi, the chairman of Afghanistan’s Independent Election Commission, gave a second press conference tto discuss Election Day after polls closed.

Some numbers

In 2,627 polling centers, with about 5,204,114 estimated voters, 1,689,457 voters had cast their votes by midday. That is 32 percent of the total estimated voters in the mentioned polling centers.

Polling centers:

5,355 were confirmed as open
153 polling centers are confirmed closed
542 polling centers had not provided information about whether they had opened or not.
Security is the main reason for the closed polling centers. However, in two polling centers of the Qarabagh district of Ghazni province IEC had been unable to deliver polling materials due to bad weather. Thus, they remained close.

Accreditation:

369,813 accreditations were distributed to agents of the candidates
281,306 of these were agents of male candidates
88,507 were agents of female candidates.

Furthermore, minor irregularities have occurred: IEC has registered those and will take appropriate action. Some powerful candidates have threatened and intimidated IEC staff and IEC has registered the incident and will take appropriate action. Also some campaigning has occurred in the polling centers.

There have been many incidents that fake cards have attempted to be used. The security officials have arrested some individuals involved with this issue. The police have asked IEC what to do with these people. The IEC has advised the police to detain these people until the end of the day and until the IEC in correspondence with ECC would reach to an agreement on what to do with them.

The official polling day ended at 4:00 PM. However, in some polling centers where ballots had finished during the day the polling day had been extended unto 4:30 PM.

Written by namfrel

September 19, 2010 at 8:06 am

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