Friday, 27th February 2015

Afghan votes auditing to go ahead without presidential candidates' observers: UNAMA

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The auditing process of the votes cast in Afghan presidential runoff would continue in the absence of observers from both candidates, Nicholas Haysom, deputy special representative of the Secretary-General for the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) said on Wednesday.

"So the audit will now process to its conclusion without the direct physical engagement of representatives of presidential candidates," the official said at a press conference here.

He made the announcement in the wake of withdrawal of the team of presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah out of the ongoing poll auditing on Wednesday morning.

A senior official with Abdullah's election monitoring team Fazal Ahmad Manawi on Tuesday accused the election commission of mismanagement in the votes auditing process, warning his team would not attend the votes auditing process unless his demand for ensuring transparency is given due course.

However, Haysom said at the press conference, "there was a pause this morning but the audit is resumed this afternoon, and we do not anticipate a significant disruption to the process."

Dr. Ghani's team has agreed to withdraw from participation in the audit process, the UN official added.

The Afghan presidential election was held on April 5 this year and since none of the eight candidates had won more than 50 percent of the votes, two leading candidates Abdullah Abdullah and Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai went for runoff on June 14, but the result has yet to be announced. KABUL, August 27 (Xinhua)



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