Failed Afghan Parliamentary candidates stage demonstration, call for new elections
Dozens of candidates who failed to pass the preliminary results of Afghanistan's second parliamentary elections accompanied by hundreds of their supporters staged a peaceful demonstration on Sunday, questioned the transparency of the legislative polls held on Sept. 18 and called for new elections.
"By holding demonstration today we want to show our protest and dissatisfaction over the fraud and irregularities committed on the voting day," Daud Sultanzoi told Xinhua.
Sultanzoi, a sitting parliamentarian who contested the polls for the second time and failed to secure enough votes in the preliminary results announced on Oct. 20, questioned the credibility of the polls, saying ensuring fairness requires holding re-elections.
It is the third time that failed candidates have staged peaceful demonstrations over the past two weeks, calling on authorities to hold new parliamentary elections, a demand that has yet to be accepted by the election body -- Independent Election Commission (IEC).
The Electoral Complaints Commission (ECC) has already referred 413 candidates to the Attorney General Office on charge of involvement in committing fraud and violation of electoral law.
According to the electoral law, final results of the parliamentary elections, due in couple of weeks, would not be announced unless all the complaints are adjudicated.
More than 2,500 candidates, including some 400 women, contested Afghanistan's second parliamentary election held since the collapse of Taliban regime in late 2001 to secure seat in the 249- seat Wolesi Jirga or Lower House of parliament.