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Meshrano Jirga urges govt to announce parliamentary elections’ schedule

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AT-KABUL: Meshrano Jirga (Upper House of the parliament) on Tuesday called on the government to announce schedule of the parliamentary and district councils’ elections as soon as possible. It also urged the government to kick start distribution of electronic ID cards.

Muhammad Rahim Husainyar, a member of the Meshrano Jirga, said that the government didn’t have the intention to hold the elections. He added that further delay of the elections will widen the gap between people and the government.

The senators urged the government to announce the exact date of the parliamentary elections. They urged leaders of the National Unity Government— President Ashraf Ghani and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Abdullah Abdullah, to put their differences aside and pave the ground for the elections.

The senators said that distribution of electronic ID cards will help in transparency of the polls.

Nadar Baloch, another senator, said that the government did not want the parliamentary elections to be free and fair; thus, they don’t want the e-ID cards to be distributed.

The first Deputy Speaker of the Meshrano Jirga, Muhammad Alam Ezadyar, said that the government should announce the schedule of the elections. He added that further delay of the elections would widen the gap between people and the government.

Meshrano Jirga also called on the NUG to spare no efforts to attain membership of Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).

Muhammad Alam Ezadyar, who was chairing the plenary session of the Meshrano Jirga, said that membership of the organization will help Afghanistan in fight against terrorism. He said that the government should request for permanent membership of SCO.

Nesar Hares, a senator, said that SCO members are willing to accept Afghanistan as permanent member of the organization. “Russia also wants Afghanistan to become member of the organization and I hope that Afghan delegation will raise the issue in the current summit of the SCO in China,” he added.

Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Dr. Abdullah Abdulalh is China to attend annual summit of the SCO. The 14th Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit began in the capital of the central Henan province of China on Tuesday. Abdullah Abdullah requested for full membership of Afghanistan in the organization.

Pajhwok Afghan News (PAN) reported in October, 2015, that the Afghan authorities have applied to the president of the country chairing the SCO requesting for its full membership in the organization. Afghanistan received observer status at the SCO in 2012.