Sixth Report on the Observation of the Voters’ Registration Process

The Independent Election Commission launched a process of “top up” of voter registration on May 26, 2013. Based on the VR procedure prepared by the Independent Election Commission, voter registration process will take place in two different phases. The first phase covers 41 centers in 34 provinces. Each center includes two sites, one for male and one for female. The second phase of the process will cover 440 centers in the districts and villages. The second phase will take two month to distribute card.

The voter registration stage of the electoral process is intended to ensure voting cards are distributed to the new eligible, returning Afghan refugees, eligible voters who have moved from one constituency to another constituency, those who have lost their voting cards, whose voting cards are damages that identifying their profile is difficult, and those who have never received a card before.
Free and Fair Elections Forum of Afghanistan (FEFA) was accredited with the IEC to conduct independent observation of the all electoral process. FEFA deployed 82 professional and trained observers to observe the first phase of the voter registration process in 34 provinces. The observers send their observation findings to the central office of FEFA. After the findings are analyzed by the Program team of FEFA they are shared with the IEC and other partner institutions.

Voter Registration process for the 2014 Presidential and Provincial Councils elections

Voter Registration process for the 2014 Presidential and Provincial Councils elections

Report of the first week

May 26-June 10, 2013

Introduction:

The Independent Election Commission launched a process of “top up” of Voter registration in the capital of 34 provinces on May 26, 2013.

Free and Fair Election Foundation of Afghanistan (FEFA) was accredited with the IEC in May 2013 to “conduct independent observation of the all electoral processes for the 2014 presidential elections.” FEFA deployed 82 male and female long term observers to all designated male and female voter registration centers at the capital of provinces for the “first phase of the voter registration.”

The new round of voter registration will add newly eligible voters and those who returned recently to the country or lost their voter cards to the 17 million voters registered in the past four rounds of elections in Afghanistan.

FEFA started observing the voters registration process

FEFA’s provincial coordinators attended a two days training program in the central office of FEFA in Kabul to be trained on how to observe the voters registration process. The purpose of the training was to introduce new observing methods to the provincial coordinators.
Observers code of conduct, voters registration procedure, methods for reviewing irregularities and some other issues were trained to the provincial coordinators in the training. The format for the weekly reports and checklists were also shared with the provincial coordinators to provide their reports according to them. The issues that the provincial coordinators learned they will train them to the district coordinators when they go to their provinces.
The presidential election voter’s registration was started on May 26, 2013 and will continue for ten months. According to the Independent Election Commission three voters registration centers in Kabul, two voters registration centers in major provinces and one voters registration center in other provinces are active now and it is to increase the numbers of the centers in each districts of Kabul, cities and provinces.
FEFA observes the voter registration process in all over the country.

Women’s Political Rights Must Be Taken into Consideration in the Election Law

(April 04, 2013) –Women’s Political Rights Advocacy Group presented its formulated recommendations for the reform of the election law to the members of Parliament, CSOs and media through a press conference. The group emphasized on the significant role of women in elections and declared, “The role of women must be considered in Election Law and in the regulations of all electoral bodies”.
Women’s Political Rights Advocacy Group is composed of 13 active and prominent members of the national assembly, representatives of CSOs, IEC, Ministry of women Affairs and media who thrives to strengthen the role of women in political processes, especially election. FEFA provides the group with technical facilitation. The group has so far conducted several meetings and the formulation of recommendations on specific women clauses of the Election Law highlights the outcome of their meetings.
1Setting out constituencies in elections, allocating seats for women and candidacy criterion for women candidates, considering gender balance in the composition of electoral bodies’ management (IEC, ECC and media commission of the IEC) and other issues codified in the electoral law were the articles the group mainly focused on while generating the recommendations.

FEFA’s Brief Report on the First Phase of Voter Registration Process

Wednesday, 08 June 2011

The Free and Fair Election Foundation of Afghanistan (FEFA) was prepared for observing the first phase of the voter registration process, but due to funding difficulties FEFA could only observe 20% of VR registration centers with 363 volunteer observers in fourteen provinces ( Badakhshan, MedanWardak, Sarpul, Ghor, Ghazni, Noorstan, Konar, Parwan, Kapisa, Takhar, Bamyan, Dikondi, Panshir, Logar) all findings of observation report were shared and pointed out to the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) staff by holding by weekly meetings. Also, the findings from the start of the process were announced through the media.
Despite funding problems FEFA’s volunteer observers have partly continued observing the VR process from the fourteen above-mentioned provinces voluntarily and they have sent the latest reports about the process to the central office. The reports indicate that the registration process in these fourteen provinces has been satisfactory, but there are indications of problems in some of these provinces.

Procedural Violations

Multiple registrations: Multiple registrations have been one of the main problems in this process. In many confirmed instances from the start of the process until now FEFA’s observers have witnessed multiple registration violations and they have been reported.

Multiple Card distribution: FEFA’s observers have witnessed in Doaba district of Nooristan that the registration center’s staff have distributed cards to community elders without following procedure. FEFA’s observers have reported that the numbers of these cards are up to 100 and similar violations have been reported from Asmar district of Kunar; Andar district of Ghazni; and Cheghcheran City of Ghor. When contact was made with the electoral provincial authorities of Kunar, satisfactory changes to avoid violation have been made. This sort of violation has been more serious and wider especially in the last week of the first phase of registration.

Women’s Participation:

Women’s participation has been observed in the registration process, but in some provinces due to culturally inappropriate services and lack of security women’s participation has been low compared to the rest of the provinces and this is worrying.
Women’s participation has been a lot lower in Maidan Wardak and Nooristan provinces compared to Parwan, Kapisa, Ghor and Takhar provinces. Also there have been differences in women’s participation between districts of the some provinces, for example in Ghazni province in Andar district female registration has been much lower than Jaghori district.

Opening of Centers:

Although the official opening times for the registration centers are set at 7:30am daily, it has been the case from the start of the process that most centers in most provinces have not opened before 8:30am
Also, some centers have been closed on unusual occasions. In one case in Dawlat Yar district of Ghor province a registration center was closed for two days because of the head of the area’s wedding party.
A large number of VR registration station have been closed occasionally or permanently from the start of the process for security reasons - in Andar, Khugyani and Nawa districts of Ghazni province; Jalrez and Jeghato districts of Maidan Wardak province; Shahrak, Tolak and Charsada districts of Ghor province; Kharwar district of Logar province; and Doaba district of Nooristan Province.

FEFA

Kartee- 4 Hajari Najari Street, Behind Russian Cultural Institute, House#013

Tel:+93-799 -310664

Web site: www.fefa.org.af

    

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