Final PC results: Losing runners cry foul

JALALABAD (Pajhwok): Some losing provincial council (PC) candidates in eastern Nangarhar province on Tuesday alleged their well-off rivals used money and political connections to win seats on the council.

They called for a thoroughgoing investigation into the final results from the April 5 PC elections to expose those who had been declared winners in return for money.

After being put on hold for seven months, results from the elections were announced two days ago by the Independent Election Commission (IEC), sparking protests by losing contenders.

Malak Nasib, who contested the election as an independent candidate, told Pajhwok Afghan News alleged that a number of IEC officials had demanded $70,000 from him in return for putting his name in the list of winning candidates.

He said he could not afford the staggering amount and thus declared a loser, but gave nothing as evidence in support of his claim. “A little investigation can unearth the fraud committed by the IEC. I wonder how long for corrupt officials will be appointed.” Nasib said the successful candidates included those who had no supporter even in their neighbourhood.

Asmatullah, another unsuccessful runner from the Rodat district, said individuals who had money and connections found their way to the Nangarhar council.

“All influential and those having no support from the masses bought votes from the IEC,” he said, adding those declared losers in the preliminary results appeared successful in the final results.

Similarly, Mohammad Zahir Sapi, whose name was missing from the final list, said the IEC leadership had not been fair in compiling the results.

He said the existing norm had been violated because there were votes which needed to be quarantined, but the IEC did not put the dubious ballots in isolation in return for money.

“I hold the IEC responsible. It did not probe complaints in a proper way and its decisions were based on corruption,” he alleged.

Being a resident of Nangarhar, Sapi said he would not recognise the successful candidates as public representatives because they had stolen the public mandate.

Another loser Haji Mohammad Anwar Ikram said the losing candidates had decided to approach the IEC and the Independent Electoral Complaints Commission (IECC) because the two bodies had played with people’s expectations.

“We urge the president to bring to justice leaderships of the two electoral bodies because we have evidence and will never stay silent,” warned Ikram.

He claimed only 30 candidates had won with clean votes nationwide and the rest made it to the provincial bodies using money and connections.

Residents also said most candidates were declared successful in return for money and they were not their real representatives.

A resident of the Behsud district, Syeda Jan, said individuals who had no popularity in the masses found their way to the provincial council.

“I don’t think people would cast their votes in future elections keeping in mind the scale of fraud and problems in the previous polls,” he remarked.


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