[QODLink]
Central & South Asia
Fake cards imperil Afghan elections
Fraudulent "registration cards" in wide circulation threaten to discredit Afghanistan's upcoming parliamentary polls.
Last Modified: 16 Sep 2010 05:36 GMT
Thousands of fake voter registration cards are in circulation in Afghanistan, threatening the credibility of forthcoming parliamentary elections.

Al Jazeera's Sue Turton, in an exclusive report from Jalalabad, says sources have told her the fake cards, being sold in the country for just over 300 Pakistani rupees (USD3) apiece, were printed in the Pakistani city of Peshawar.

One of the agents selling the professionally made cards said his network had sold 1.5 million cards over the past three months.

It is believed that there are many such networks selling the fraudulent cards.

About five million people are expected to vote in Saturday's elections. If election observers fail to detect these fake cards, the millions of fraudulent ballots in circulation could have a significant, maybe even decisive impact, on the whole election.

In Jalalabad, a city east of Kabul, Farooq Millanay, the local member of parliament, is so concerned about the effect of these cards on his own ballot that he is calling for the polls to be postponed.

Jalalabad appears to be at the centre of the fake-cards market.

Last year's elections in Afghanistan were marred by claims of fraud and corruption. Complaints of vote rigging and irregularities plagued the process, which yielded a questionable verdict for the incumbent president, Hamid Karzai.

In the course of its investigation, Afghanistan's Electoral Complaint Commission, backed by the United Nations, found "clear and convincing evidence of fraud" in certain provinces.

Karzai's campaign spokesman dismissed the allegations of fraud as "rumours".

Source:
Al Jazeera
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
At least 25 tax collectors have been killed since 2012 in Mogadishu, a city awash in weapons and abject poverty.
Tokyo government claims its homeless population has hit a record low, but analysts - and the homeless - beg to differ.
3D printers can cheaply construct homes and could soon be deployed to help victims of catastrophe rebuild their lives.
Lack of child protection laws means abandoned and orphaned kids rely heavily on the care of strangers.
Featured
Booming global trade in 50-million-year-old amber stones is lucrative, controversial, and extremely dangerous.
Legendary Native-American High Bird was trained in ancient warrior traditions, which he employed in World War II.
Hounded opposition figure says he's hoping for the best at sodomy appeal but prepared to return to prison.
Fears of rising Islamophobia and racial profiling after two soldiers killed in separate incidents.
Group's culture of summary justice is back in Northern Ireland's spotlight after new sexual assault accusations.