The Independent Electoral Complaints Commission (IECC) on Wednesday confirmed that it will validate nearly 11,000 non-biometric votes which come from 298 polling stations based on their stickers and the QR codes (quick response codes that can be read by a scanner).
A member of the IECC said that these votes have not been registered in the data center of the Independent Election Commission (IEC).
This comes few weeks after the IECC ordered a special audit for votes from 2,126 polling stations out of a total of 2,423 polling stations and decided to validate votes from 298 polling stations. The 2,423 polling stations include votes that have not been registered biometrically, according to the IECC.
“When there is no biometric information, I don’t think that the QR code reader is able to read it, therefore, we mentioned it in our decisions that the Independent Election Commission needs to prove to us that these votes--which come from 298 polling stations-- are biometric votes and have biometric data,” said Sayed Qutbuddin Roydar, member of the IECC.
On February 5 the IECC announced that a small percentage of the 300,000 disputed votes would undergo a special audit, rather than the assessment of all of the votes in question.
From the total of 300,000 disputed votes, 102,000 votes--according to some campaign teams--were cast either before or after the legal hours for voting on election day.
According to Roydar, if the special audit of the votes finds that from the 102,000 votes, 14,000 votes were cast before or after the legal voting hours or have discrepancies with their voting sheets, then all the votes will be invalidated.
Observers meanwhile called on the IECC to give further clarification to the public about their decisions.
“If they (IECC members) move from the law or do not work hard for transparency, in that case, I think it will be very difficult for the IECC to maintain justice,” said Yousuf Rashid, director of Free and Fair Election Forum of Afghanistan (FEFA).