A group of 11 presidential candidates – out of a total of 18 – are seeking an alternative to the National Unity Government, also called NUG, after its legal term ends on May 22.
The National Unity Government was initially formed in 2014 after controversial elections which left the two leading candidates – President Ashraf Ghani and Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah – with disagreements over alleged fraud in the polls.
The deal of the National Unity Government was brokered by former US Secretary of State John Kerry.
Based on Article 61 of the Constitution, government term will end on May 22 but the upcoming presidential elections have been scheduled for September 28. The candidates said they are trying to prevent a power gap.
“In one word I want to say that we as the presidential candidates have reached the conclusion that the incumbent government’s term will end. In our decision, we have considered the issues of national interests, crisis prevention and political and legal issue,” presidential candidate Noorulhaq Ulumi said.
“Our indicators for dismissal should be articles 67 and 68 of the Constitution. As the government’s legal term end, the president (Ashraf Ghani) and his deputies should be dismissed from power,” presidential candidate Faramarz Tamanna said.
“The Chief Executive (Abdullah Abdullah) post will be automatically dismissed because the government was created based on a political agreement. Based on these two articles of the Constitution, speaker of the Senate should lead the country as a caretaker,” Tamanna added.
President Ghani in many occasions has reiterated that he will not stay in power after the legal term of his government.
Ghani’s deputy spokesman Shahussain Murtazawi said on Saturday that the National Unity Government has got another six months and its term will not end on May 22.
“The same problem was created in 2009 and 2014, but the problems were resolved through the interpretation of the Constitution and through the channels that interpret the Constitution. Meanwhile, six months has remained until the completion of government’s five years,” he said.
Shaida Mohammad Abdali, another presidential candidate, who is not among the 11 candidates said he also disagrees with the government to continue after its legal term.
“The government should reach an agreement with the candidates and the politicians after May 22,” Abdali said.