Organisation : Independent Election Commission of Afghanistan
Facility : Electoral System
Country : Afghanistan
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Electoral System :
** An electoral system is the means by which voters make a choice between options, often in an election or on a policy referendum.
** According to IFES, “an electoral system contains rules for valid voting, and how votes are counted and aggregated to yield a final result.”
** Dedicated institutions implement the electoral system of each country.
** In Afghanistan, the Independent Election Commission (IEC) is mandated to carry out elections throughout the country.
** The IEC implements all kinds of elections called for in Constitution and the Electoral Law.
The followings are types of election in Afghanistan:
** Presidential Elections
** Parliamentary Elections
** Provincial Council Elections
** District Council Elections
** Mayoral Elections
** Municipal Elections
** Village Council Elections
Counting and Tallying the Votes :
** Counting the ballots in the elections takes place immediately upon the conclusion of polling at the polling station.
** Each polling station chairperson is responsible for organising the count in his/her respective polling station.
Persons allowed to witness the count :
Persons who may enter or remain for the count are:
** Polling officials;
** IEC officials with special duties relating to polling and counting;
** Persons introduced by ECC;
** Accredited agents of political parties, coalitions and independent candidates;
** Accredited electoral observers, national and international, language assistants of international observers;
** Accredited members of the media with valid press cards; and
** Special guests.
Special Needs Voting :
The IEC recognizes the need to facilitate access to polling for voters with special needs, including members of the Afghan National Army, police, internally displaced persons, prisoners (who have not been deprived from their civil and political rights by a court of law), or people that are hospitalized.
In order to facilitate access to polling for those people, the IEC adds polling stations to existing polling centers.
POLLING REGULATION :
Legal Base :
This regulation has been approved by the Independent Election Commission (hereafter referred to as the Commission) under Article 79 of the Electoral Law.
This regulation shall regulate affairs related to polling process in 2014 presidential and provincial council elections taking into account the provisions of Articles 6 and 56 of the Electoral Law.
Right to Vote :
1. Any Afghan citizen who has completed 18 years of age, has not been deprived of civil rights by a court and been registered as a voter, may attend predetermined polling stations in the relevant electoral constituency on Election Day and cast his/her vote by presenting the voting card issued by the Commission in accordance with the current procedures.
2. The Commission shall provide necessary conditions to maintain secrecy of the vote.
Polling Centers and Stations :
1. Polling shall be conducted in the centers which will be established by the Commission across the country based on population, geographical situation and voters’ accessibility.
2. The Commission shall, to the extent possible, provide facilities for the following eligible voters such as hospitalized patients, prisoners, personnel of military units and for persons who are in shelters.
3. Voting centers shall, to the extent possible, be established in areas where the public and specially the handicapped have accessibility.
4. Polling centers and stations shall not be established inside personal houses and places.
5. Separate polling stations shall be established for female voters inside every polling center.
6. Considering population and number of voters, the Commission will determine the number of polling stations in each polling center.
7. If nomads are located far away from polling centers, a separate polling center shall be established in proportion to their population.
Election Day and Polling Times :
1. The Commission shall specify Election Day in electoral calendar and inform the public of polling start and end time.
2. If more than one election is held on the same day, necessary voting conditions and facilities shall be provided to voters for this purpose.
3. If riot, violence, storm, flood and or other unexpected incidents occur as a result of which the polling process become impossible or deranged in polling stations or centers, the field coordinator or polling center manager shall give order to stop the polling process temporarily and or completely close the poling center.
4. The field coordinator is obliged to inform the Commission of his decisions about paragraph 3 of this article through the Provincial Officer as soon as possible.
5. After resolving the situations stated, the field coordinator may, after receiving permission from the provincial office, extend the polling process on that day as long as it was abandoned.
6. Before announcing the ending time of polling, the last voter in the queue is marked and the voters standing in the queue are allowed to cast their votes. No one can join the voters’ queue to vote after announcing polling end time.
7. Considering conditions and necessity, the Commission may decide on extending polling hours in one or several polling centers or constituencies for up to two hours.