The Independent Election Commission (IEC) on Saturday said parliamentary elections in Ghazni province could possibly be held at the same time as Presidential Elections in April next year.
While parliamentary elections were held in 32 provinces on October 20 and 21 and in Kandahar on Saturday, October 27, Ghazni is the only province that has not yet cast its votes.
Ghazni elections were postponed indefinitely over disagreements around constituencies and security issues.
Now the election commission says it will hold Ghazni elections with Presidential Elections in 2019.
“The election was not held in Ghazni because registration forms (voter registration forms) did not arrive in the province. But our assessments are ongoing to hold Ghazni elections. But the high possibility is that Ghazni elections will be held with the Presidential Elections,” IEC spokesman Sayed Hafizullah Hashemi said.
But some critics said this would not be possible.
“As the voter registration process was not held in Ghazni for parliamentary elections, it is possible that the parliamentary elections cannot be held with the Presidential Elections as well,” Yusuf Rasheed, executive director of Free and Fair Election Foundation of Afghanistan said.
Ministry of Interior (MoI) meanwhile said the ministry is ready to maintain security of elections in Ghazni if the election commission wants to hold elections in this province before the Presidential Elections.
MoI spokesman Najib Danish said at a press conference in Kabul over maintaining security of elections in Kandahar that Afghan security forces are ready to maintain security for Ghazni elections if the election commission plans elections in the province.
“If the election commission has any plan to hold elections in Ghazni, security forces are ready to maintain security,” said Danish.
A number of Ghazni residents meanwhile urged government, security departments and the election commission to hold parliamentary elections in the province as soon as possible.
“Ghazni election date should be specified as soon as possible,” a Ghazni resident said.
“It is really unfortunate that elections were held nationwide except in Ghazni province,” another resident said.