§ Lord Avebury
asked Her Majesty's Government:
What information the provisional reconstruction team in Afghanistan have about the number of citizens who have registered to vote in each of the provinces; and whether the registration process can be speeded up. [HL3311]
§ Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean:
The UK and other provincial reconstruction teams do not have any electoral responsibilities other than assisting in ensuring a secure environment in their area of operations. But according to the Afghanistan Joint Electoral Monitoring Body, as of 17 June, over 4 million Afghans had been registered to vote, of whom 35 per cent are women.
The following is a regional breakdown for 14 June (we do not have precise information for 17 June):
- Central 1,155,982
- East 521,394
- North East 559,387
- South East 210,155
- Central Highlands 246,486
- North 398,848
- South 309,466
- West 537,317
Phase I of voter registration, in Kabul and regional centres, has been completed and Phase II, designed to reach more rural areas, was launched on 1 May. The pace of registration is speeding up.
The UK is committed to supporting the electoral process. Last year we contributed £10.55 million to support election registration. We have pledged a further £0.5 million for voter education and £2.77 million to support preparations for elections themselves.