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E-ID cards to ensure election transparency

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E-ID cards to ensure election transparency
 Electronic ID cards could make Afghanistan’s elections fairer and contribute to social justice as well. Plans to introduce the biometric cards known as “tazkira”, carrying the fingerprints and digital photos of the bearer, were first announced in 2009. 
Meanwhile reducing opportunities for ballot-fraud, the extensive data contained in the ID cards, such as personal and family status and place of residence, should be a valuable resource for government, giving it a more accurate profile of the population and thus contributing to social and economic policies.But plans to roll out the ID cards have been hampered by many problems and also by sensitivities over the description of all holders as “Afghan”.
Recently The Independent Election Commission has promised the elections will be held right on schedule if security is ensured as promised by security organs, ID papers are issued timely, and budget is provided to IEC in time. The commission said had been making efforts over the past one year to make the preparations for polls a success, but there was government’s dereliction.
This while thatHumayunMuhtat, the census department head, wrote on his Facebook page on Thursday that the president had ordered them to be prepared rolling out the cards. He said President Ashraf Ghani has ordered the Population Registration Department to get ready for issuing electronic identity cards within coming days.He said the cards distribution would start next week in coordination with the Presidential Palace.
Indeed with the distribution of electronic ID cards, the real number of population and nationalities of the country to be known and also through this process, the fraud is prevented in upcoming parliamentary elections. 
Afghanistan is from among limited countries that its works and programs are promoted in lack of correct number of population and figures. Now, that all cases of distribution of electronic ID cards is finalized, there is no reason for prevention from distribution of electronic ID cards. 
In upcoming elections, distribution of E-IDs would prevent fraud to a large extent and would not allow the issue happen again as we witnessed in previous elections. The leaders of the National Unity Government had promised that upon taking power,would start distribution E-IDs, but almost three years have passed since the inauguration of the current government and E-IDs have not yet been distributed, however the population registration law had already approved by the parliament last year.
It is believed that there are still thousands of voters with faked cards which are published in neighboring countries, aiming to make frauds in the elections. But distribution of the E-IDs to overcome the challenge and would foil all enemies’ vicious plans.
Meanwhile lack of fixed number of population havealso causedhealth and education sectors to face serious challenges across the country. Offering of imbalanced services during recent years in the country is one of reasons for lack of correct figures which led to many issues for the citizens.
If a stable Afghanistan is really needed, then the ID card distribution process should begin as soon as possible, as the ID cards would bringessential facilities for the citizens and to also bring about transparent and fair elections in the country.