Electoral disputes in Afghanistan is administered and resolved through the Independent Electoral Complaints Commission (IECC). The duties and authorities of IECC is enshrined in the “Law on the Structure, Duties, and Authorities of the Independent Election Commission and the Independent Electoral Complaints Commission.”
The IECC and Independent Election Commission (IEC) are legally and functionally independent from one another, although both function for ensuring integrity of the electoral process. While IEC is tasked for planning and implementing the elections, it can only announce election results after IECC has investigated all complaints.
IECC is the body mandated to address objections and complaints from violations related to elections. IECC has a central complaints commission based in Afghanistan’s capital, Kabul. During the election period, it is tasked to establish provincial complaints commissions in each province.
IECC has the authority to adjudicate and decide in cases of complaints related to electoral violations including violations in the execution of the electoral process. It adjudicates cases on objections regarding the list of candidates, whether they have complied to the requirements and qualifications. It has the power to issue warnings and instructions to the violating person or organization and impose disciplinary action to erring parties or impose cash fines in accordance with the provisions of the Electoral Law.
IECC can decide on matters relating to re-counting of votes before certification and announcement of election results. According to law, the central complaints commission, provided evidences to committing a crime, may refer the case to the Attorney’s office for judicial prosecution. Decisions made by the central complaints commission are final and irrevocable.
To meet quorum in meetings, two thirds of the members should be present. Meanwhile, decisions shall be taken by a majority of the members present in the meeting. Meetings of the commission shall be held openly wherein representatives of political parties, civil society, members of the media, domestic and international observers can attend the sessions.