IFJ to IEC: Ensure media access to polling stations

(MENAFN- Pajhwok Afghan News) KABUL (Pajhwok): The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and its affiliate the Afghan Independent Journalists Association (AIJA) have asked the Independent Election Commission (IEC) to guarantee media access to polling stations.

The call from IFJ comes less than a week ahead of the parliamentary and district council elections, slated for October 20. Concerns have been raised about the access for provincial journalists to polling stations.

Several provincial journalists have raised concerns with AIJA as IEC has refused to distribute €˜coverage cards€™ for the elections. AIJA investigations found IEC officials misbehaved towards local media.

According to a statement from IFJ, IEC officials have told the journalists to go to the central office in Kabul to get their coverage cards, which is not a feasible solution.

AIJA expressed deep concern over the lack of IEC will to allow local journalists to cover the elections and noted the issue could raise concerns at transparency in the elections.

€œAttempts to block the media from covering the upcoming elections in Afghanistan raise serious concerns access to information and transparency of the election processes and voting,€ it added.

€œThe Independent Election Commission needs to take immediate steps to ensure journalists and media across Afghanistan have easy access to cover the elections.€


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