At least seven voter registration centers have remained closed in Helmand province due to security threats and the presence of the Taliban, local officials from the Independent Election Commission said on Saturday.
The officials said the process in districts was launched on May 15.
The voter registration process is normal in Nad Ali, Garmser, Nawa, Nahre Seraj, Washir and Kajaki districts, acting head of the Independent Election Commission in Helmand, Ahmad Shah Sahibzada, told TOLOnews.
He did not mention anything about the districts where centers are closed.
“Voter registration centers are open in the districts that I mentioned. People can register their names there. On our list, Marjah district is also included, but the security situation is bad there and our employees cannot go there by car, but they may go there by air. It is up to the central office to decide about the fate of the seven districts,” he said.
A resident of Helmand said people in the province want to register their names even in insecure areas.
“In the areas under government control people do want to register their names for the election. And in the areas under Taliban control, voter registration is not possible. We are in a secure area and are ready to register our names,” said Hayatullah, a resident of Nad Ali district.
Nad Ali district governor Mohammad Hashemi meanwhile called on residents to register their names to vote.
“We are fully ready to conduct the voter registration process in this district. Nad Ali is near to (Lashkargah) city and its people are more socialized, and they will participate in the election,” he said.
Statistics by the Independent Election Commission released on May 17 show that so far at least two million people across Afghanistan have registered their names to vote ahead of the October elections.
Election observers and monitoring groups last week welcomed the end to tension between members of the IEC and its chief over the stamping of copies of identity cards, saying the four IEC commissioners who opposed the plan in fact had legitimate concerns.
IEC announced on Wednesday that it has scrapped the decision to stamp copies of voter identity cards.
The commission said in a statement that it has decided to stamp original identity cards of voters to allow them to cast their votes in the coming elections in the country.
To ensure safety of voters, the commission asks voters to visit a population registration office and get an original copy of their ID cards so that it can be stamped at voter registration centers, a statement sent to TOLOnews by an IEC member read.