Karzai wins 54% of preliminary vote

2009-09-17 08:54 BJT

Special Report: Afghan presidential election |

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Afghan election officials say preliminary vote counts show President Hamid Karzai obtained 54 percent of the presidential ballots.

However, the country's second presidential election was marred by allegations of widespread fraud.

According to the Independent Election Commission, incumbent Karzai garnered more than 3 million votes, while his main challenger, Abdullah Abdullah, had 1.5 million.

The election still has not been certified, as a UN-backed complaints commission, is examining thousands of potentially fraudulent ballots.

Daoud Ali Najafi, Chief Electorial Officer of the IEC, said, "Hamid Karzai is leading right now. But the final result will be announced when complaints which the Electoral Complaints Commission (ECC) received are reviewed. Then final results will be announced and we will see who will be our future president. "

Nearly 3,000 complaints have been filed and more than 700, are considered serious enough to sway the election results.

If the commission invalidates enough votes, Karzai's returns could drop below 50 percent,which is the basic requiremnet for winning the election. This would force a two-man runoff with Abdullah, who has about 27 percent of the vote.

The EU Observation Mission to Afghanistan says about 1.5 million votes, nearly one quarter of all ballots are suspicious.

Karzai's campaign office described the announcement as partial and irresponsible."

Editor: Zhang Pengfei | Source: CCTV.com