Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

FOCUS

As France’s Carrefour pulls out, what next for India’s retail market?

Read more

#TECH 24

Internet of Things

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - July 25th, 2014 (part 2)

Read more

REPORTERS

Halal tourism on the rise

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - July 25th, 2014

Read more

#THE 51%

Sweden: A Feminist's Paradise?

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Search of Air Algerie crash site continues

Read more

WEB NEWS

NSA targets 'Tor' network users

Read more

WEB NEWS

Web users call for peace in Gaza

Read more

  • France offers asylum to Iraqi Christians

    Read more

  • Moroccan police arrest French al-Qaeda recruiter

    Read more

  • Video: Slaviansk mourns mass grave victims

    Read more

  • France honours those lost on Air Algérie Flight AH5017

    Read more

  • Video: Ethiopia turns to wine to boost image, economy

    Read more

  • Thousands gather in Marseille in support of Israel

    Read more

  • Luc Besson’s sci-fi thriller ‘Lucy’ tops US box office

    Read more

  • As France’s Carrefour pulls out, what next for India’s retail market?

    Read more

  • Liberia tightens border controls to curb Ebola outbreak

    Read more

  • The centenary of Austria-Hungary’s calamitous last hurrah

    Read more

  • UN Security Council calls for immediate Gaza ceasefire

    Read more

  • Nibali joins elite group with Tour de France win

    Read more

  • France calls on its nationals to leave Libya as violence escalates

    Read more

  • Boko Haram kidnap Cameroon minister's wife in deadly attack

    Read more

  • Muslims prepare for Eid al-Fitr festival

    Read more

  • ‘Irresponsible’ American dad tries to scale Mont Blanc with children

    Read more

  • Ukraine fighting prevents observers from accessing MH17 crash site

    Read more

  • In pictures: Crowds flock to enjoy the Tour de France show

    Read more

  • Netanyahu says Hamas 'violating its own ceasefire'

    Read more

  • Costa Concordia arrives in port of Genoa to be scrapped

    Read more

  • In pictures: Youths clash with police at banned Gaza protest

    Read more

  • Russia lashes out at new EU sanctions over Ukraine

    Read more

  • Bodies of all Air Algérie crash victims to be brought to France

    Read more

  • Syrian army and ISIS both claim advances

    Read more

Asia-pacific

Abdullah leads in tight Afghan presidential poll

© AFP

Video by Charlotte HAWKINS

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2014-04-13

Former foreign minister Abdullah Abdullah is leading against his main rival Ashraf Ghani in a tight race for Afghanistan’s presidential post, partial official results showed Sunday, but reports of widespread fraud is marring the election.

Initial results based on 10 percent of the vote from 26 out of 34 provinces showed Abdullah in the lead with 41.9 percent, the Independent Election Commission said, while Western-leaning academic Ghani came second with 37.6 percent.

A third candidate, running with the backing of two of President Hamid Karzai’s brothers, trailed far behind with 9.8 percent.

“I want to make clear that the results could change in future, as we announce the results with additional percentages of the vote and this is not the final result,” said the chairman of the election commission, Ahmad Yousuf Nuristani.

Afghanistan’s allies praised the April 5 vote as a success because of the high turnout, estimated at 60 percent of 12 million eligible votes, and the failure of Taliban militants to stage high-profile attacks on the day.

Number of fraud incidents exceeding 2009 vote

But evidence of widespread fraud could undermine the legitimacy of an election meant to usher in Afghanistan’s first democratic transfer of power, as incumbent Karzai prepares to step down after more than 12 years in power and Western forces prepare to leave.

Observers say the number of recorded incidents of serious fraud have already exceeded the figures for 2009, when over a million suspect votes were thrown out.

The election complaints body hinted it might need more time than expected to investigate all of the complaints though the volume would not affect the overall schedule for electing a leader. Final results are due on May 14.

“There is a possibility, in order to review the high number of complaints accurately, that we may expand the time frame for reviewing complaints in provinces for some days,” said Nader Mohseni, spokesman for the Independent Election Complaints Commission (IECC).

The three front runners have all complained of fraud.

To win, a candidate must secure more than 50 percent of valid ballots. Failing that, the top two candidates go into a run-off.

Partial results from a sample of ballots were expected on Saturday but were delayed until Sunday.

Stuffing ballot boxes

The IECC has recorded a total of 870 incidents of fraud classed as “Priority A”, complaints considered serious enough to affect the outcome of the election, higher than the 815 incidents recorded in 2009.

That said, the greater number recorded this year could reflect a greater willingness or capacity on the part of observers and voters to complain about fraud.

Video clips of polling station workers and other people stuffing ballot boxes are circulating on the Internet, but it remains unclear whether fraudulent votes might have benefited any one candidate over another.

In 2009, ballot-box stuffing was the most common type of fraud. The complaints commission has yet to disclose which type of suspected fraud was most prevalent this time.

Overall, the IECC has recorded a total of 3,724 complaints, exceeding the total of 3,072 in 2009. The number could rise as complaints reported in the provinces reach Kabul.

Urban participation in the election was unexpectedly high, but it is unclear to what extent rural voters were deterred by the Taliban, who condemned the vote, and what role state officials, including police, had in encouraging people to back a particular candidate.

(FRANCE 24 with REUTERS)
 

Date created : 2014-04-13

  • AFGHANISTAN

    In pictures: Afghans go to the polls

    Read more

  • AFGHANISTAN

    Afghans defy threat of violence to vote in historic election

    Read more

  • AFGHANISTAN

    With no Karzai, Afghans vote in open race with high stakes

    Read more

COMMENT(S)