Major political parties in the country, Jamiat-e-Islami and Hizb-e-Islami, reacted to the roll out of the electronic national identity cards, bringing certain reasons to support or oppose President Ashraf Ghani’s decision in this respect.
Hizb-e-Islami leader Gulbuddin Hekmatyar announced his support to the distribution electronic national identity cards and said the ID cards ‘must be distributed’.
“This gathering asks in one voice that the electronic identity cards must be distributed. The word of Afghan, Islam and everyone’s ethnicity should be mentioned in the identity cards,” he said as he addressed his supporters at a gathering in Parwan province on Friday.
One member of Jamiat-e-Islami party however said that the decision by President Ashraf Ghani to launch the roll out of the electronic identity cards is unacceptable and the process is illegal.
“The move will create ethnic disagreements and will negatively impact the voter registration process and it is illegal,” Noor Mohammad Akhlaqi, member of the leadership team of Jamiat, told TOLOnews.
“We think that President Ghani has started the process to gain ethnic-based supporters,” he added.
Afghanistan Central Civil Registration Authority (ACCRA) meanwhile said they will continue issuing the electronic identity cards.
The authority said they issued at least 100 ID cards on Thursday.
“Based on the law, we have to open our centers in Kabul City in the near future. We are will open a center next week. It will be opened for people and they can come to fill forms for their electronic ID cards,” the ACCRA spokesman Rohullah Ahmadzai said.
According to the ACCRA, the electronic identity cards will be issued in six phases. The first phase will take six months in which the ID cards will be issued in five centers in Kabul. The next phase will include issuance in provinces.
The electronic national identity card system was officially launched in Kabul on Thursday when President Ashraf Ghani and the First Lady Rula Ghani were handed their cards.
Speaking at the event, Ghani said the roll out of the new system was in line with attempts to tighten security.
He said the new ID cards would hopefully cut down on the number of fake IDs (Tazkiras) in the country.
However, in a press conference shortly after Ghani’s remarks, the CEO of the National Unity Government (NUG) Abdullah Abdullah said the electronic ID card system was not legitimate and did not have the support of the Afghan people.
“The reason I have not participated in distribution of electronic Tazkiras is that I know this process has not received the needed legitimacy and support from the Afghan people. A one-sided decision that has been approved by all sides can only lead to crisis and more problems,” Abdullah said.