In the midst of criticism and tensions, the Independent Election Commission (IEC) announced that results of the presidential runoff would be announced on Monday.
IEC Chairman Ahmad Yousuf Nuristani said that the institution is committed to announce the preliminary results on Monday.
“We discussed the announcement of preliminary results with the civil society institutions and they have promised to support us. God willing, we will announce the results tomorrow” Nuristani said.
A number of election observing institutions who have held meetings with IEC members, have said that the results of the re-evaluation of 2,000 polling sites will be completed by Sunday evening in time for Monday’s announcement.
Presidential candidate Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai’s campaign team welcomes the announcement of the runoff preliminary results.
“The IEC must announce the preliminary results on Monday because they’ve promised the people of Afghanistan, hence we will not accept anymore delays,” Abbas Nawyan, member of Ghani’s campaign team, said.
In response, presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah’s campaign team said that the results should only be released if the genuine votes have been separated from the fake votes.
“This announcement of results will place people in bewilderment,” Said Alemi Balkhi, member of Abdullah’s team, said. “The announcement should have been made after the separation of clean votes from the fraudulent votes.”
The Free and Fair Election Foundation of Afghanistan (FEFA) said that if the preliminary results are delayed again for the sake of transparency, then it will not be a problem, otherwise they should be announced on Monday.
“If the delay is due to the transparency of the elections then it is not a problem, but otherwise the election timeline must be considered,” Muhammad Yusuf Rasheed, executive head of FEFA, said.
Meanwhile, the Transparent Election Foundation of Afghanistan (TEFA) holds concerns of the possible consequences and stresses that any consequence will solely be on shoulders of the election commissions.
“We do not favor instability and violence in the society and if the preliminary results are to have negative consequences, all related institutions will be responsible,” says Muhammad Naeem Ayoubzada, head of TEFA.
Abdullah’s electoral camp still does not have any relations with the IEC and emphasizes that the announcement of preliminary results be publicized after a thorough review of suspicious votes otherwise, the announcement of the preliminary results will not be legitimate and acceptable to them.