Lawmakers in Afghanistan’s parliament dismissed a controversial decree recently issued by President Ashraf Ghani on the regulation of public gatherings, strikes and demonstrations, terming the order in contrast with the nation’s Constitution and democracy values.
“The decree is rejected,” Wolesi Jirga, Lower House of Parliament, Speaker Abdul Rauf Ibrahimi told lawmakers on Monday.
Some lawmakers said the decree contravenes Afghanistan’s Constitution.
“Individual liberties have been dealt dictatorially and no Afghan citizen will be able to come and protest for his peaceful purposes,” said Fawzia Kofi, an MP from Badakhshan.
“All conditions predicted in the draft are quite restricted in practical manner,” said MP Massouda Karokhail.
Other legislators meanwhile argued that the decree was in the interests of the county as it has been witnessed that some people are misusing civil freedoms under the name of demonstrations and protests.
“In the face of the miseries and dangerous situations which are currently prevailing in Afghanistan, everything is misused in Afghanistan; therefore, there is a need for more debates to be carried on the law,” said MP Humaira Ayubi.
“I don’t understand why the (parliament) commission has brought this issue to the house,” said Lailuma Hakmi, an MP.
The decree is now expected to be put for further debates in Meshrano Jirga, the Upper House of Parliament.
The decree bans holding any kind of protests and demonstrations near government institutions and public roads.
Officials of Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) have also described the six-chapter and 32-Article decree as repressive and in divergence to the principles of democracy.