The Independent Election Commission’s (IEC) selection committee on Tuesday said by the end of this week they will introduce six applicants to government.
The committee started work on the selection process of candidates for the position of new commissioner for the IEC. This comes after the former IEC chief Najibuallah Ahmadzai was dismissed by President Ashraf Ghani about six weeks ago.
According to the committee, they had received 57 applications and rejected 41 of them following their assessments.
Now the committee is assessing the remaining 16 applications and will shortlist six of them. These six will be introduced by the end to the work to government.
According to the committee, they will introduce two lists - each one will include three applicants.
“Our work is ongoing and we are trying to send the results to the presidential palace as soon as possible and they should introduce one candidate from the three introduced candidates to the IEC,” Bilal Sediqqi, a member of the committee said.
Meanwhile, the institutions overseeing the election process said the selection committee has worked outside the law and that their representatives were not called to oversee the process of shortlisting and assessing the applications.
The institution said the selection commission has not shared the names of applicants and the process is being carried out secretly.
However, they said the selection committee should introduce the most competent applicants to government.
“Access to documents can be a principle here to certify transparency. Thus, we have asked them to have an acceptable mechanism and transparent process,” said Mohammad Naeem Nazari, the head of the Afghan Civil Society Human Rights Network.
“They (government ) once again established the committee. It means they want to pave the way for their favorite candidate to become the IEC chief,” Fazel Ahmad Manavi, former head of IEC said.
The selection committee was established one year ago to select commissioners for the IEC. At the time the committee sent a list of 21 applicants to government.
About six weeks ago, IEC chief Ahmadzai was dismissed by the president and based on the law, the president should have chosen someone within a week as IEC commissioner from the original list he got from the selection committee.
The president however did not choose anyone from the list, but instead issued a decree and ordered the selection committee to find new candidates.
Although the institutions overseeing the election process said the restart of the selection committee’s work is against the law, but said they should introduce the most qualified and competent applicants to government.