Afghan Election Fraud Blatant ‘Stealing in Daylight’

September 6, 2009

(ChattahBox)—The evidence is piling up against Afghan President Hamid Karzai that he employed blatant election fraud tactics reminiscent of Iran’s recently contested election results, which sparked days of bloody protests. Some voting results show Karzai securing 100 percent of the votes in known opposition districts, with allegations of ballot stuffing by local police.

The Afghan presidential election vote count is presently on hold, as the country’s Independent Election Commission (IEC) decides what to do with thousands of tainted ballots.

President Karzai needs 50.1 percent of the vote to declare victory in the first round, which he is on track to obtain, unless the IEC throws out suspected fraudulent ballots. Top presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah promises a legal fight if Karzai succeeds in obtaining 50.1 percent of the vote. And Abdullah’s supporters have threatened “Iran-style protests with Kalashnikovs.”

“This is a blatant violation of the procedure and I think it is stealing in daylight,” said Abdullah.

The IEC is overwhelmed with than 2,600 reports of vote-rigging, including at least 650 considered serious enough to “materially” influence the election result. The reports include “state-sponsored” ballot-stuffing, vote burning, intimidation and the closure of polling stations in antigovernment areas.

Some polling stations denied election observers access to the voting sites. In one blatant example of election fraud, the southern Afghan district of Shorabak was heavily in favor of candidate Abdullah Abdullah, with tribal leaders backing Karzai’s top opponent.

However, on Election Day, all 46 polling sites in the Shorabak district were closed. The ballot boxes were delivered to Kabul holding 23,900 ballots, with every one of them containing a vote for Karzai. The tribal leaders claim that Ahmed Wali Karzai, the President’s brother and leader of the Kandahar provincial council, arrested the local governor and closed all the polling sites. Later, local policemen awarding Karzai with an impossible 100 percent of the vote, stuffed the ballot boxes.

Karzai also received 100 percent of the vote in other districts. In the Kandahar village of Torzai, Karzai won every vote. At four of its eight polling stations, he received exactly 500 votes.

Other reports include intimidation and arrests of election observers, with local police threatening to kill any observers who showed up at polling stations.

Meanwhile, the IEC continues to investigate hundreds of claims of voting fraud, putting any further public announcements of voting results on hold. Wednesday’s vote count showed Karzai three points short of the 50.1 percent needed to avoid an election runoff.



2 Responses to “Afghan Election Fraud Blatant ‘Stealing in Daylight’”

  1. Twitted by CBSueMichaels on September 7th, 2009 9:15 pm

    […] This post was Twitted by CBSueMichaels […]

  2. Isa Lube on September 8th, 2009 3:51 pm

    I hope he doesn’t terrorize like the rest of them…I’m not surprised this fraud took place, I mean, hello, look what country this is taking place…

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