UPDATE - Afghan Authorities Unlikely To Release Presidential Vote Results On Time - Official

KABUL (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 11th October, 2019) Syyed Qutbuddin Royadar, a member of Afghanistan's Independent Electoral Complaints Commission, told Sputnik that the country's Independent Election Commission will not be able to release the results of the Afghan presidential election on October 19 as scheduled due to some problems facing the voting system.

"The election commission was in a state of disarray or due to the problems in system... The commission would not be able to announce the preliminary results on October 19th," Royadar said.

Meanwhile, the Complaints Commission had registered a total of 4,512 complaints concerning the September 28 election.

However, sources said there have been speculations on whether the Election Commission would count votes cast with a biometric voter verification system, which was used by the authorities to avoid electoral fraud.

The Election Commission Chairman, Hawa Alam Nuristani, has told reporters that only biometric votes would be counted.

"As we have agreed, only biometric votes will be counted, but the concerns are unaddressed that biometric votes will be counted," Nuristani said.

The election monitoring team has expressed concerns to Sputnik that voter participation would be greatly reduced if votes cast through the biometric system were not counted.

Notably, the electoral commission has been unable to upload the votes for several days since the system has been damaged.

Meanwhile, Ajmal Khail, a member of the Complaints Commissioner said at a news conference that the Election Commission's member, Mohammad Kabir Panayi, had been referred to the prosecutor's office as some voters' Names were not registered in the biometric system on the day of the election.

According to media reports, citing Maulana Mohammad Abdullah, a member of the Independent Election Commission, data from 22,400 biometric devices and final results of 14,000 biometric devices have reached the main server though the commission was supposed to upload the data of 26,568 polling devices from as many polling sites to the server.

The election commission's secretariat said, as cited by news reports, that the problems had been caused by poor internet connection since under the original plan the data was supposed to be uploaded at the end of the voting day.

Earlier this week, election monitors from the Transparent Election Foundation of Afghanistan (TEFA) told Sputnik that according to their preliminary data, the country is heading toward a presidential runoff since they predict that no candidate will secure enough votes.