Presidential candidates should respect people’s vote

The presidential candidates have been claiming victory in Saturday election after ballot counting had barely begun, raising fears of a new political crisis in a nation convulsed by imposed war.
The contradictory claims by the candidates came four days after the voting was held despite dozens of attacks by Taliban insurgents, who had called the election illegitimate and warned Afghans not to participate.
Afghanistan’s election commission, the body administering the vote and responsible for declaring its winners, was feeling the weight of the task. The voting on Saturday was so far regarded as very clean compared with previous elections and commission had time and again said was the only organ to declare the winner.
Still, the competing assertions by the leading candidates — even though it will take two weeks to count all the ballots — raised new worries that one or the other would declare the vote illegitimate when final results are announced.
Meanwhile Afghans took into social media and condemned the candidates remarks, saying they defied Taliban threats and voted for democracy and safeguarding of the achievements and such moves shouldn’t undermine the process. The people also ask candidates to wait for the final results and respect the people’s participation in the process.
The election was unprecedented comparing to previous years. Despite low turnout, the election commission could manage better the process and fraud was largely prevented. Meanwhile, the brave people of Afghanistan sent a clear message to Taliban that elections are not against peace process and if the group wants peace in Afghanistan, anytime they can negotiate with the people’s elected government.
Afghans also sent a message to the international community through attending the election that they will support republic and democratic system in Afghanistan. The brave women of Afghanistan have also sent a meaningful message to all stakeholders that they cannot tolerate the situation which was imposed on them 20 years ago. Though a large number of young women and girls did not see the Taliban system, they studied about their dark mentality and can imagine the consequences of Emirate if the group takes the political power in the country.
Afghans are tired of war and have given much sanctifies in war on terror. Therefore, they would not accept any deal to their votes and to undermine the democratic process. The presidential candidates should respect the people’s vote and the rule of law refraining from any bias and arbitrary results that may disturb people’s minds.
No one should use the electoral process as weapons, and they should stop saying there must be something wrong or electoral frauds if they lose. Afghans are committed to rule of law and should solve the problems through the principles outlined in the electoral code and the applicable laws of the country, and not allow changing the national opportunities to national threats. Any deal with people’s vote would undermine the whole process and people’s trust would be lost on the democracy and democratic processes in the country.

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