Election observers on Monday criticized the Independent Election Commission (IEC) over failure to expedite the process of transferring data from the biometric devices to the commission’s main server, saying the election commission should fix the problems in the process.
But officials from the Election Commission have linked the problem to some technical shortcomings including internet outages.
Over the past nine days, the Election Commission has managed to transfer data from 21,000 biometric devices to the IEC’s main server.
“Over the past four days, the process of transferring data from the biometric devices to the database is slowing down and we have shared our concerns regarding this issue with the leadership of the election commission,” said Mohammad Younus Nawandesh, an observer in the IEC.
“I think the main server is overworked and the internet speed is slowing down when all the data is transferred from the devices to the server,” said Abdul Qader Hotkhel, an observer.
Meanwhile, presidential candidate Gulbuddin Hekmatyar in a letter to the Election Commission has asked the election commission to clarify the shortcomings facing the process.
“One of the biggest issues is non-biometric votes. The commission shouldn’t have allowed its employees to accept non-biometric votes. Our observers estimate the number of non-biometric votes to be over 800,000 votes,” said Humayoun Jarir, member of the Hizb-e-Islami leadership council.
“We expect the commission to share the exact figures about biometric and non-biometric votes with the people,” said political analyst Asif Ashna.
Meanwhile, the IEC said there are some technical issues in the process of transferring data that will be resolved very soon.
“There were some technical but small problems, such as the internet problem which will be resolved very soon,” said Abdul Aziz Ibrahimi, spokesman for the IEC.
“The separation process is carried out in two ways for the non-biometric votes to be separated. But in the second phase, we separate those votes which are biometric votes but which have duplicate finger prints or duplicate photos,” said IEC commissioner Mohammad Abdullah.
The election commission has said that over 2.6 million Afghans have voted in the September 28 presidential elections.
Sources in the IEC have told TOLOnews that there could be around 600,000 to 700,000 non-biometric votes.