News / Asia

Ghani Rules Out Afghan Coalition Government

FILE - Afghanistan's presidential candidate Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai, June 11, 2014.
FILE - Afghanistan's presidential candidate Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai, June 11, 2014.

Afghan presidential candidate Ashraf Ghani ruled out a coalition government with his rival Abdullah Abdullah on Saturday, quashing hopes for a power-sharing deal to defuse tensions that have threatened to split Afghanistan along ethnic lines.

Ghani and Abdullah have locked horns since the June 14 second round runoff, accusing each other of trying to manipulate the vote and declaring victory in the contest to succeed Hamid Karzai as president.

Prompting speculation that a back-room power-sharing deal was in the making, officials have delayed the announcement of preliminary election results until Monday, potentially giving both candidates more time to find ways to end the impasse.

But speaking to reporters on Saturday, Ghani explicitly denied he sought a coalition government.

"People are concerned and the question they have been asking is if we have made any deal. Our answer is clear: we have not made any deal. We assure the people that we will not betray their votes," Ghani said. "Our commitment is to defend national interests, not personal interests."

The protracted dispute over the election has all but destroyed Western hopes for a smooth transition of power in Afghanistan, where the atmosphere is already nervous as most U.S.-led troops prepare to pull out this year.

Abdullah, a former anti-Taliban resistance fighter, draws his support from the Tajik minority in northern Afghanistan while Ghani, a former World Bank economist, represents the Pashtun majority.

As their standoff intensified, Afghanistan has become awash with speculation about a broader rift along ethnic lines or more violence unless they agree to accept the outcome of the vote or agree on a compromise power-sharing arrangement.

Taliban threats

Adding another layer of complexity to an already tense situation, Taliban insurgents have vowed to disrupt the election process. On Saturday, militants set fire to 200 oil tanker trucks supplying fuel for NATO forces near Kabul.

Ghani's aides, citing election observers, say he is in the lead in the runoff by at least one million votes.

Abdullah, for his part, has accused Karzai, an ethnic Pashtun, of playing a role in the alleged rigging in Ghani's favor, and last week thousands of Abdullah's supporters marched on the presidential palace in a peaceful protest.

"The uncertainty has resulted in the loss of hundreds of millions of dollar in investment...Deals are suspended because the future is uncertain," Ghani said.

In response to allegations of mass fraud, the Independent Election Commission is now recounting votes from 1,930 polling stations and will announce its findings on Monday.

Refusal by either candidate to accept the outcome would result in a dangerous deadlock, a worry for the United States, which hopes for a swift transfer of power in order to sign a security pact allowing some U.S. forces to stay in the country.

Ghani said election results should not be delayed further.

"The electoral timeline cannot be changed. We have been committed to the process and the process has to be followed," he said. "For the sake of the nation we accepted the delay for a few days (but) we cannot accept any more delays."

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Comment Sorting
by: Haron from: Afghanistan
July 06, 2014 1:33 PM
anytime when Dr. Abdullah "Abdullah" stand to help their people. he has beaten by fraud of Government. anytime when got to raise his speech against Taliban the specific elements (Pakistan, UK, and Afghan Government) accelerated to support Taliban against people of Afghanistan.
I myself welcome Dr, Abdullah "Abdullah" animus and his behavior he has never stopped his gains to cooperate all Afghan people.
one thing is very dangerous if Dr. Abdullah got 50+1 all votes of people in Afghanistan and Independent Election Commission announce a fraudulent president as a top candidate then Democracy die and should be grave. then we must to call on Afghanistan as Syria, Libya, Egypt, and Tunisia and it could be worsen Afghanistan situation on future.

by: 1worldnow from: Earth
July 05, 2014 10:28 PM
Maybe the majority of the world is totally ignorant of the life in Muslim countries, but VOA is so passive about truths that would help everyone understand why there is so much trouble with Muslim nations that have a democratic system of electing government officials. Keeping the simplest of explanations can cause those who have no clue about Muslim nations, will continue to HAVE NO CLUE!

It is easy for all, if you just put things into 'laymens' terms. Islam is divided similarly to Christianity. All the different sect, and even the sects have different sects. Each believe they are the heir of Muhammed. Since none have proof as to who is the 'chosen' by Muhammed, then the only way they feel to settle this dilemma, is that the correct sect will be smiled upon by Allah, and the particular sect will have the hand of Allah to wipe out all Muslims not within their sect.

This is their religion. Wake up. I didn't make this up, this was explained to me in great depth while having meals with Muslims in their own homes! This is how I learned that the media makes the world view 'jihad' as a bad and horrible word, but when you say 'Crusades', then that seems romantic and forthright. I didn't understand a lot of the world, Christianity, Islam, Judaism, until actually being in their homes, in their countries. There is no sanction, no weapon, no recourse for any Muslim to see that their religion is controoling their thoughts, their hearts, and their minds. This is what Christianity used to be! The people who wrote the Koran (not Muhammed!!!!!!), were political and psychological geniuses. Developed a religion that completely confines a human being, willingly.

When a Muslim of influence from a particular sect wins an election, then all the other sects/tribes cry foul, every Muslim nation! Not because there is any proof or reason given, it is because they (the Imams, caliphs, muftis, etc) are required to raised their voices for the sect they represent. If these sect leaders say nothing, then they are viewed as weak, and the sect WILL seek revenge unpon their 'speaker' aginst him and his family. It is tradition, it is not considered bad. If a man in the Muslim world wishes to have power for his people, then he is required to react and respond accordingly, even if we think it is foolish, evil, etc. Hope this has helped more of you to understand that media outlets cannot in no way explain the Muslim world this way, or journalists will fear for their lives in and around Muslim nations.

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