The acting head of the Jamiat-i-Islami party, Salahuddin Rabbani, on Friday demanded reservation of seats for political groups in the forthcoming parliamentary elections.
At a gathering on a peaceful transfer of power in Kabul, Rabbani suggested the next polls be held on a party basis to promote democracy in the country.
Rabbani, whose father handed power to President Hamid Karzai in late 2001, proposed changes in the electoral law so as to require candidates to have the support of political parties and voter signatures.
Also the High Peace Council chairman, he remarked: “In a democratic dispensation, people meet their demands through political groups.
“In order to get out of the prevailing situation of uncertainty, we need to have parties, not individuals, representing the masses on the political scene,” the Jamiat leader said, echoing a recent call from a 21-party alliance.
The coalition’s Council of Cooperation had proposed 50 percent of parliamentary seats be reserved for political parties and the rest for independent candidates.
Rabbani hoped the 2014 presidential and provincial council elections would be conducted in a transparent manner, paving the ground for a positive change in the country.
We have raised the peace slogan for several years and now our call has turned into a national demand
With regard to ongoing efforts by the peace panel, he said there been some progress in the reconciliation campaign. “We have raised the peace slogan for several years and now our call has turned into a national demand...” From the theoretical, he said, the peace body was inching toward negotiations with insurgents. “The groups that opposed the government-led drive have now joined the process,” the chief peace negotiator added.
He told the meeting, attended by a number of political analysts and ministers that his father Burhanuddin Rabbani, who was assassinated in a suicide attack in September 2011, supported a peaceful power transfer even at the party level.
Afghanistan's National Coalition leader Dr. Abdullah Abdullah praised Prof. Rabbani setting a precedent by shifting power in an orderly manner to his successor in a country that has seen bloody power tussles.
He urged the government to ensure transparency in the presidential polls and avoid committing fraud so that everyone accepted the result.
Minster of Commerce and Industries Anwarul Haq Ahady also appreciated Prof. Rabbani’s strong democratic credentials. He warned of possible insecurity in the country if the upcoming polls were rigged.
Meer Agha Nasrat Samimi