Four more Afghan election workers arrested
KABUL: Four Afghan election commission employees have been arrested, an official said Monday in a sign that the political intrigue over September's fraud-tainted parliamentary election is not over.
It's the second round of arrests since the attorney general pledged a wide-ranging investigation over the Sept. 18 vote. Four other commission employees were arrested in late November.
The latest arrests came on Sunday night but the four have not been charged, said Abdullah Ahmadzai, the chief electoral officer of the Independent Election Commission, or IEC. The men worked in logistics and administration for the 2009 presidential election and 2010 parliamentary elections, Ahmadzai said.
Ahmadzai said the men are accused of involvement in the alleged improper selling of $8,000 worth of materials left over from the 2009 presidential race, including ink, pens, paper and tents.
He rejected the accusation and said the materials were sold with the permission of U.N. donors and the money was used to fund operating costs for the commission.
An official at the attorney general's office confirmed the arrests, but did not provide further details.
Many had hoped the Sept. 18 parliamentary vote would prove a success story for the government of President Hamid Karzai after a fraud-marred presidential poll nearly undermined his credibility last year. Instead, the wait for the legislative results dragged on for more than two months amid fraud charges and accusations that the president's office was trying to influence the results. -Ap