Jordanians to vote Wednesday amidst Islamists’ boycottSouce:Xinhua Publish By Thomas Whittle Updated 23/01/2013 9:12 am in World / no comments
AMMAN, Jan. 22 — Jordanians will head to voting stations on Wednesday to elect their 17th lower house of parliament, according to the Independent Elections Commission (IEC) .
Some 2.3 million Jordanians out of 3 million eligible voters registered to cast their ballot in the elections, which will be held from 7:00 a.m. until 7:00 p.m. local time, according to the IEC.
The elections will be held amidst the boycott by Jordan’s largest opposition party the Islamic Action Front (IAF), which decided to boycott the polls demanding radical constitutional amendments and a change to election law.
The Islamists, although boycott voting and running for the elections, formed several teams to monitor the polls and pledged to reveal any violations witnessed during the voting process, IAF secretary general Hamzah Masnour said in a press conference recently.
On Tuesday, however, Abdul Ilah Khatib, head of the IEC, pledged that the elections will be fair and transparent, adding that the commission took all guarantees to ensure that citizens exercise their democratic role.
He added that the commission took several measures against violators of the elections law to prevent vote-buying.
Five candidates running for the polls including a head of a national list were detained over the past few days over alleged vote-buying.
Meanwhile, Jordan’s Public Security Department said around 47, 000 police members will be deployed on Wednesday to protect the voting stations and facilitate the process.