Afghanistan is an Islamic Republic. Afghanistan's constitution separates the
government into three branches - a powerful executive,
legislative and judicial. The constitution also calls for a Grand Assembly
or Loya Jirga to convene under certain situations.
Current President of Afghanistan
The President is the head of the executive branch. The President serves as
the head of state and the Command-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Afghanistan. He or
She is elected by receiving more than 50% of the votes cast through free,
general, secret, and direct voting. If none of the candidates for President
receive more than 50% of the votes in the first round, a run-off election is
held within two weeks. In this round, only two candidates with the highest
number of votes are allowed to participate. In the run-off, the candidate who
gets the majority of the votes will be elected as the President. The executive
branch also includes two Vice President and members of the cabinet. Cabinet
Ministers are appointed by the President and approved by the National Assembly.
Abdul Rauf Ibrahimi
Current Head of Wolesi Jirga
Fazel Hadi Muslimyar
Current Head of the Meshrano Jirga
The legislative branch is the National Assembly or Parliament. The National
Assembly consists of an upper and lower house. The lower house is the Wolesi
Jirga (the House of People) and the upper house is the Meshrano Jirga. (House of
Elders). No one can become a member of both houses simultaneously. Members of
the Wolesi Jirga are elected by the people through free, general, secret, and
direct elections. Members of the Meshrano Jirga are elected and appointed as
- From among the members of each provincial council, the respective council
elects one person for a period of four years.
- From among the district councils of each province, the respective councils
elect one person for a period of three years.
- The President from among experts and experienced personalities – including
two representatives from the disabled and impaired and two representatives from
the Kochis – appoints the remaining one-third of the members for a period of
five years. The president appoints 50% of these people from among women.
Abdul Salam Azimi
Chief Justice of Afghanistan's Supreme Court
The judicial branch consists of the Supreme Court (Stera Mahkama), High
Courts, and Appeal Courts. The Supreme Court is composed of nine members who are
appointed by the President for a period of ten years with the approval of the
Wolesi Jirga. The appointment of the members for a second term is not
permissible. The President appoints one of its members as the Head of the
Supreme Court. The members of the Supreme Court cannot be dismissed from their service until the end of their
term, except circumstances stated in Article 127 of Afghanistan's constitution,
"When more than one - third of the members of the Wolesi Jirga demand the
trial of the Chief Justice, or a member of the Supreme Court due to a crime
committed during the performance of duty, and the Wolesi Jirga approves of this
demand by a majority of two-thirds votes, the accused is dismissed from his post
and the case is referred to a special court."
The current Supreme Court Chief Justice is: Abdul Salam Azimi. He was sworn
in on August 5, 2006. Before the Wolesi Jirga was established, Fazl Hadi Shinwari
was the Chief Justice. He was rejected in 2006 after the Wolesi Jirga was
The current Supreme court is made up of the following 9 justices:
Chief Justice Abdul Salam Azimi
Deputy Chief Justice Bahuddin Baha
Justice Gholam Nabi Nawai
Justice Mohammad Alim Nasimi
Justice Mohammad Omar Barakzai
Justice Abdul Rashid Rashed
Justice Pohand Abdul Aziz Aziz
Justice Zamen Ali Behsudi
Justice Abdul Malik Kamawi
Grand Assembly (Loya Jirga)
Loya Jirga is the highest manifestation of the people of Afghanistan. It
consists of the following:
- Members of the National Assembly.
- Chairpersons of the provincial, and district councils
- The ministers, Chief Justice and members of the Supreme Court can
participate in the sessions of the Loya Jirga without the right to vote.
The Loya Jirga is supposed to be convened in the following situations:
- To take decision on issues related to independence, national sovereignty,
territorial integrity, and supreme interests of the country.
- To amend the provisions of the Constitution.
- To prosecute the President.
Last updated by Abdullah Qazi on January 26, 2016