Ashraf Ghani confirmed President as deal is struck with Abdullah Abdullah
The Independent Election Commission (IEC) announced yesterday afternoon that Dr. Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai had been elected President. There was, however, no announcement as to the number of votes received by the new President and his run-off rival Dr. Abdullah Abdullah. That appears to have been part of a deal which was struck by the two candidates after months of arguments following the second round runoff on 14th June.
The arguments between the two men over who had won had become so heated that the United Nations agreed to carry out a full audit of the election ballots. That had taken weeks to conclude and at one point both candidates had walked away from the recount. IEC chairman Ahmad Yousaf Nuristani announced yesterday that the votes of 11,945 polling stations were found ‘genuine’ and votes of 1,260 polling stations were invalidated. Votes of 9,677 polling stations were recounted by the monitors.
In a power sharing deal which will also create a so called National Unity Government Dr. Abdullah Abdullah will become the Chief Executive or he can appoint someone else in his place whilst Dr. Ashraf Ghani will be inaugurated as President sometime this week.
The full details of the deal have not yet been released, but it appears that the two men will share control key ministries. The deal can’t come too soon as a key official informed the Washington Post that the “government is nearly broke” and will require $537 million from the United States and other international donors in the form of a bailout within the next few days in order to pay its bills.
One of the first acts of the new President will be to sign a bilateral security agreement with the United States to allow a small force of troops to remain in Afghanistan after 2014 for training purposes.