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ECC Faces Delays and Non compliant Candidates

The Electoral Complaints Commission (ECC) has had a tough go at it, admitting on Thursday that the opening of its provincial offices necessary to processing complaints against candidates would be delayed further and that a number of candidates failed to address the financial transparency concerns raised earlier this week.

According to the ECC, the provincial offices will be opened just as soon as the names of over 100 new employees are approved by President Hamid Karzai.

"These individuals have been nominated for president Karzai's approval, we hope that the president soon approve them on the basis of the law, then we will open our provincial offices," ECC secretary Nadir Mohseni said on Thursday.

Many expected the ECC to have already opened its offices in the provinces, with Presidential campaigns already underway and the election day less than two months away. According to the official election calendar, the Independent Election Commission (IEC) and the ECC were both intended to have their provincial offices open two months after their central ones.

The IEC has taken on the responsibility of transferring complaints filed against the candidates in the provinces to the central ECC office in Kabul.

The only complaints publicized by the election officials so far have in fact come from the IEC itself. According to the IEC, already five days into the campaign season, three Presidential hopefuls have failed to submit their financial records and follow the designated protocal that all the candidates are required to observe.

"Any action of the candidates inconsistent with the protocal is considered a violation and transgression," ECC spokesman Nader Mohseni said.

The names of the three candidates who are in violation of the IEC's financial transparency regulations were not disclosed.

The Presidential and Provincial Council elections are scheduled to be held on April 5 this year, and are expected to be a momentous step for the country marking the first democratic transition of Presidential power in Afghan history.

According to Election Law, Presidential campaigns started on February 2 and will last until April 2. Provincial Council candidates can start their campaigns on March 4 and run them until April 2.

Thursday, 06 February 2014, TOLO News

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