The top United Nations envoy in Afghanistan today welcomed the certification of nearly all the final results for September’s legislative elections, adding that the formation of a new parliament will be a major step on the country’s path to building stability.
Afghanistan’s Independent Election Commission (IEC) has finalized the results in 34 out of the 35 constituencies in the 18 September elections for the Wolesi Jirga, or lower house of parliament, and said it will take more time to certify the results in Ghazni province.
Staffan de Mistura, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative and head of the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), said the final certification is the culmination of many months of dedicated work by the IEC and the Electoral Complaints Commission (ECC).
“While we have noted that there were many irregularities and much fraud committed during this election, the committed work of the IEC and the ECC to identify and deal with these problems marks a significant step in the development of Afghanistan's national electoral capacity,” he said in a statement.
“The formation of a new parliament will be a major step in Afghanistan's path to improving its democratic governance and the capacity of Afghan institutions to deliver services to the Afghan people.
“These improvements are an essential element in Afghanistan's efforts to build stability and sustainable peace,” he added.
Some 2,500 candidates – including nearly 400 women – vied for the parliament’s 249 seats covering all 34 Afghan provinces, plus the Kuchi constituency.