Kabul, April 26 (IANS) Afghan President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani formally inaugurated the country’s new Parliament amid tight security on Friday.
“You are representing all Afghans and not a particular clan. Let us join hands, stand together and work together for the stability and prosperity of Afghanistan,” Ghani said at the opening of the 17th legislature term of the country’s National Assembly.
It was the third Afghan parliament since the collapse of the Taliban regime in late 2001 and the 17th parliament in the history of the country, reports Xinhua news agency.
Afghanistan’s third post-Taliban parliamentary election was held on October 20, 2018, and the election commission has yet to announce the final result in some of the constituencies.
More than 2,600 candidates including over 400 women contested the race to secure a seat in the 250-seat Wolesi Jirga or Lower House of National Assembly.
The first parliamentary election in post-Taliban Afghanistan was held in 2005, while the second parliamentary polls took place in 2010.
However, the 2015 parliamentary polls, originally set to be held in early 2015 following presidential elections, had been repeatedly delayed.
Addressing the gathering, Ghani said the majority of the new lawmakers were from the young Afghans who would protect women’s rights, human rights and other rights of all Afghans.
Some of the newly-elected lawmakers also took the oath administered by Ghani at the end of the event.