President Ashraf Ghani who addressed a big crowd at the ceremony of Nawroz celebration in Balkh said presidential elections are one of the most important happenings in the New Year and that the process should not face a further delay.
The election commission on Wednesday announced September 28 as the new date for the presidential elections.
“No more delay in the presidential election is acceptable," Ghani stressed.
”The people of Afghanistan should decide what kind of future they want," Ghani said.
Based on the previous timeline, the elections were supposed to be held on July 20.
Addressing a press conference, IEC Chairperson Hawa Alam Nuristani said the new amendments to the election law and some other issues are behind the decision to postpone the elections.
The ceremony in Mazar-e-Sharif city was attended by President Ghani, government officials, Afghanistan’s Head of Ulema Council, Qayamuddin Kashaf, diplomats from Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan.
Ghani left Kabul early Thursday to participate in the ceremony.
Hundreds of men, women and children had gathered at the Blue Mosque where the ceremony was held.
However, Atta Mohammad Noor, former governor of Balkh was absent in the ceremony who last week stood against appointment of Abdul Raqib Mubariz as the new provincial police chief.
On Tuesday, in a video message sent to media, Noor warned that he will use any option if the agreement is not implemented. Noor is not talking about the details of the agreement which has been made between him and the security heads but says that they agreed on a third option.
At Thursday’s ceremony, Ghani said that Afghanistan is the heart of Asia and that a stable Afghanistan is in favor of all regional countries.
"We honor on our security forces and they are fighting for their country," he said "Afghanistan is not the previous Afghanistan. Today you can see our sisters, elders and you can also see freedom."
He stressed that peace should be long-term not a peace which will lead to "bloodshed".
“This is the year that we will celebrate 100 years of Afghanistan's Independence," Ghani said, adding that this year "we should support our unity."
Ghani wished Afghans a happy New Year and said he hopes the people will witness peace this year.
Nawroz was celebrated in different part of the country on Thursday.
At least six people were killed, and 23 others were wounded at least three rockets landed near a Nawroz celebration ceremony in Kart-e-Sakhi area in Kabul city, according to health officials.
The Ministry of Interior confirmed three explosions in the area.
The victims of the attack were taken to nearby hospitals, officials said.
No group, including the Taliban, has claimed reasonability for the attack.