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Ghani's confrontation with democracy

Feature: Ghani’s Confrontation with Democracy

A presidential candidates’ council in Afghanistan gathered huge public protest against the Presidential Palace and President Ashraf Ghani last week and, in a joint declaration, they asked the president to step down.
Thousands of their supporters, as well as influential and powerful figures, attended the gathering.
In the press release, they called President Ghani as a former president of Afghanistan. According to the statement, Ghani’s term had ended on May 22.
According to the Afghan Constitution, as well, the legal tenure of President Ghani ended on May 22. The Council of Presidential Candidates suggested Ghani to either step down from his presidency or refrain from his candidacy.
They also demanded that an interim-government should be established. In a joint declaration, they asked to restrict the authority of current government and also set up a clear mechanism under monitoring of candidates and other institutions related to the elections in order to hold presidential election on September 28.
The Presidential Candidates Council also emphasized that President Ghani should be restricted from misusing of government resources to campaign for his team.
They also asked to cancel all the appointments and dismissal of government staff, and award of contracts after May 22.
In a joint resolution, the Council urged Ashraf Ghani to end his “interference” in electoral affairs, while emphasizing electoral reform.
These candidates have described some of the policies of Ghani as dissolute and creating division among Afghans and they called for the suspension of such policies.
In their resolution, the candidates supported peace as a vital and urgent necessity for the Afghanistan.
Thus, on one side of this situation, there is Ashraf Ghani, and on the other side, presidential candidates and major political parties and public whose confrontation with the state means a tsunami in the political scenario.
Considering the past experience in the politics of Afghanistan, many coalitions can’t exist for a longer time, and we can’t predict about the future of these political coalitions. However, it is imperative to realize that the continuation of illegal term of Ashraf Ghani as president of Afghanistan and ignoring the demands and protests of opposition and political parties will have a bad effect for the young democracy in Afghanistan.
The past eighteen years can be called the era of democracy in Afghanistan, wherein with the help of the international community, there has been end to long era of dictatorship and turmoil.
It is important to safeguard this democracy; however, it is also vital to learn through the experiences that we face. At the same time, the non-democratic or the actions that are detrimental to democracy must be highlighted, criticized and corrected, otherwise, our journey towards democracy may not prove to be successful.
The presidential election of 2014, which was marred with the fraud and rigging, created an obstacle to democracy. There were serious feelings among the intelligentsia and masses that whether our democracy was on the way forward or all the efforts were in vain.
After the five years of NUG’s tenure, former President Ashraf Ghani still wants to continue his service illegally and hold the upcoming presidential polls under his supervision to ensure his ruling for another five years.
This is an obvious sign that democracy has experienced fanaticism in the country, and what comes from this kind of democracy is not people’s rule, but thirst for power that is gained through force and illegal ways.
Ashraf Ghani is not an elected head of a state in true democratic ways. Moreover, he became president after the controversial deal that was finalized after the controversies in 2014 presidential election. His presidentship was governed more that the deal that was finalized for the formation of NUG; nevertheless, all those have been overlooked. And, at the same time, the Constitution of the country is not valued by the most important institution of the country, which raises serious questions about Ghani’s intention regarding the future of democracy. It appears that he is more inclined towards extension of his rule than the nourishment of the democratic process, which is not for the betterment of the country as a whole and must be protested against.
(Sahar News)

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