Irregularities disrupt some Afghan voters

Election watchdogs say deficiencies in the voters’ list and biometric devices are major problem in voting process of Afghanistan 2019 presidential polls. Habibullah Shinwari, a member of the Transparency and Election Watch Organization of Afghanistan (ETWA), told Kabul Now that he could not vote for his name was not found in the voters’ list.

According to the ETWA official, the voters’ names are missing on voters’ lists while some others Afghan voters cannot find their names on the digital record of the biometric devices.

He added that some polling centers opened late and people turnout is also low in some provinces. He stated that security measures have been taken properly.

A number of voters are complaining that they cannot find their names in voters’ list. A voter in a polling center set up inside Homayoun Shahid High School told Kabul Now that he and 50 other voters could not find their names, neither in the voters’ lists nor in record of biometric devices.  

Transparent Election Foundation of Afghanistan (TEFA) has said 98 percent of the polling centers opened on time in all 34 provinces across the country.

So far the people turnout has been very low in today’s elections, mainly in Khost, Paktia, Jowzjan, Ghazni, Nim-e-Roz, Paktia, Badakhshan, Kabul, Takhar, Farah, Qandahar, and Sar-e-Pul provinces, according to the TEFA.

Findings by Afghanistan’s Independent Human Rights Commission also suggest performance of the Independent Election Commission has been poor in Badakhshan, Balkh, and Herat provinces.

Women turnout was high in Daikundi, Bamyan, and Herat provinces while it was low in Kandahar, Kunduz, and Balkh province, according to AIHRC.

Following complains by voters over missing their names in the voters’ list, the IEC has announced that those whose names are not on the voters’ list or in records of biometric devices can cast their votes.