Political rights, citizen’s participation in development agenda focus of a televised event
JALALABAD – In a televised debate hosted by Sharq Television in the eastern province of Jalalabad, panelists urged citizens to make use of their political rights, participate in national processes, foster peace and support development initiatives.
Featuring panelists from the Independent Election Commission, civil society, political parties and community leaders, the discussion focused on political rights and citizen’s role in advancing democracy, fostering sustainable peace and supporting national development. They called upon Afghans to take a more proactive role in national affairs including participating in democratic processes such as the upcoming parliamentary and district October poll.
“If Afghans can use their political rights, they will bring peace and reconstruct the country,” said Naqibulla Jabarkhil, a provincial leader for Paiwand-e-Mili Party in Nangarhar. “Political rights give citizens many powers like choosing leaders they want,” he said, further arguing that processes such as elections are in the interest of the nation and the responsibility of every Afghan.
Other panelists including Mawlawi Muhamad Sadiq, a religious scholar called upon Afghans to participate in upcoming elections arguing that “The religion of Islam emphasizes on establishing a good government, by electing good leaders” he said.
The UN together with other international organizations reiterate their support to Afghanistan’s electoral processes and believe that the success and credibility of elections lie not just with the electoral body, but a collective responsibility of all stakeholders including political parties, media, civil society, political leaders, and voters.
In ending the lively debate, panelists made recommendations for increasing citizen’s participation in upcoming elections especially women and those living in rural areas by namely: improved security, voter awareness and providing timely information.
Supported by UNAMA’s Jalalabad regional office in partnership with Sharq Television, the programme was broadcast to an estimated audience of 1million viewers in Jalalabad, and neighboring provinces as part of a country-wide outreach initiative aimed at creating platforms for local communities to engage in dialogue on critical issues.