Ashraf Ghani declares winner 5 month after Afghanistan presidential election

By Aizbah Khan - Web Editor

18th February, 2020

Ashraf Ghani has been declared the winner of last presidential election of Afghanistan held in September following delays due to allegations of vote-rigging.

Ashraf Ghani was re-elected with 50.64% votes while his rival Abdullah Abdullah was a runner-up  with 39.52% of votes.

Opposition said the vote on 28 September was rigged by massive fraud and technical problems with bio-metric devices used for voting.

Only a small proportion of the country voted in the election.

Chief Election commission of Afghanistan Hawa Alam Nuristani announced the result during a press conference in Kabul.

She said 137,000 votes were suspicious and 12,012 votes cast outside polling hours had been found to be valid during a special audit.

It is to be noted that polling for Afghanistan’s presidential elections held in September last year had opened amid fears of violence following threats by the Taliban to disrupt the election process.

Blast kills dozens at Afghan president’s rally

Tens of thousands of security forces have been deployed across the country to counter Taliban militants who have vowed to target polling stations.

The twice-delayed vote is taking place after Taliban-US peace talks collapsed earlier this month.

The two main candidates are the incumbent, Ashraf Ghani, and chief executive, Abdullah Abdullah.

About 9.6 million of Afghanistan’s 34 million people are registered to vote for one of the 14 candidates at around 5,000 polling centers that will be protected by some 100,000 Afghan forces with air support from U.S. forces.

In the northern province of Balkh, voters waited for election officials to arrive at polling stations set up in schools, colleges, mosques, hospital campuses and district centers.

An explosion at a polling station in a mosque in the southern Afghan city of Kandahar wounded 14 people, according to a security source. In the northern Faryab province, Afghan forces clashed with Taliban fighters in six districts, forcing people to stay indoors and refrain from voting.

The Taliban said in a statement their fighters attacked polling stations in eastern Laghman province. Officials said four explosions in eastern Jalalabad city disrupted voting at some stations.

Explosions also hit the Afghan cities of Kabul, Ghazni and Jalalabad, officials said

Earlier this month, an airstrike and raid were conducted by Afghan Special Forces against of Taliban in southern Helmand province.

At least 35 members of a wedding party, including women and children, were killed and multiple wounded in an airstrike in southern Afghanistan.


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