Mohammad Ashraf Ghani

Born into an influential Afghan family in 1949, Dr. Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai spent his early life in the central province of Logar.  He completed his primary and secondary education at the Habibia High School in Kabul.
He travelled to Lebanon to attend the American University in Beirut and returned to Afghanistan in 1974 to teach Afghan Studies and Anthropology at Kabul University before winning a government scholarship to pursue a master degree in Anthropology at New York’s Columbia University.
He received his PhD from the Columbia University with a doctoral thesis (Production and Domination: Afghanistan, 1747-1901) and was immediately invited to teach at the University of California, Berkeley (1983) and then at Johns Hopkins University (1983-1991).
In 1991, Ahmadzai joined the World Bank (WB) as lead anthropologist, advising on the human dimension to economic programmes. Following the ouster of the Taliban from power in late 2001, he was asked to serve as special advisor to Ambassador Lakhdar Brahimi, the UN secretary general’s special envoy to Afghanistan.
In that capacity, he worked on the design, negotiation and implementation of the Bonn Agreement, which set out the roadmap for transition to a new government.
During the interim administration, he served on a pro bono basis as chief advisor to then interim President Karzai. He worked on preparation of the Loya Jirgas (grand assemblies) that elected President Karzai and approved the Constitution.
As finance minister during the transitional administration, he issued a new currency in record time; computerised operations of treasury, introduced the budget as the central instrument of policy, centralised revenue and instituted regular reporting to the cabinet, the people of Afghanistan and international stakeholders as a tool of transparency.
He won the Sayed Jamaluddin Afghan Medal, the highest civilian award in the country. He was recognised as the Best Finance Minister of Asia in 2003 by Emerging Markets.
From March 31 to April 2004, he presented a seven-year programme of public investment, securing Afghanistan’s future at an international conference in Berlin, attended by 65 finance and foreign ministers.

Ghani for the first time run for presidential elections in 2009 and secured three percent of all votes in fourth position after Hamid Karzai, Dr. Abdullah Abdullah and Ramazan Bashardost.

In second term of former president, Hamid Karzai, Ghani took charge of the responsibility transition program from foreign forces to Afghan forces.

For the second time, Ghani who chose Gen. Abdul Rashid Dostum, an Uzbek, as his first and Sarwar Danish as his second vice president in 2014 presidential elections in a second round with Dr. Abdullah Abdullah following outrage over the election results of the first round that led to the creation of national unity government.

Under the national unity government agreement, Ghani became president and Abdullah Chief Executive Officer (CEO).

In his electoral ticket, Ghani picket Amrullah Saleh, from Tajik ethnicity from Panjsher province, as his first and Sarwar Danish, a Hazara and member of Hizb-i-Wahdat Islami party as his second vice-president.

 

Dr. Abdullah Abdullah

Dr. Abdullah Abdullah is the son of Ghulam Mohiuddin Khan, who was selected as a senator from Kandahar province in the last year of kingdom. Born in 1959 in Kabul, Dr. Abdullah received education at the Ghazi Mohammad Ayub Khan School and went on to graduate from the Naderia High School in 1976.
In 1977, he got admission to the Kabul University’s Faculty of Medicine, where he completed his training in ophthalmology in 1983. He subsequently served as a specialist at the Noor Eye Hospital in Kabul.
In 1984, he went to Pakistan to take care of refugee families at the Sayed Jamal-ud-Din Hospital. The following year, he joined the Afghan Freedom Fighters and served as caretaker in charge of health affairs for the Panjsher Valley resistance front. It was there that Abdullah became an advisor to Ahmad Shah Massoud.
From 1992 to 1996, he served as a spokesperson for Afghanistan's Defense Ministry and subsequently as Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs. Abdullah was in charge of foreign affairs for the government-in-exile of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, led by President Burhanuddin Rabbani from 1999 until the collapse of the Taliban regime.
After Taliban’s ouster from power, Abdullah continued as foreign minister of the transitional government. Approved by the Grand Assembly (Loya Jirga), and within the first elected government, he continued as foreign minister until 2006.
Dr. Abdullah is married and has three daughters and a son.

He ran as presidential candidate in two previous elections, once in 2009 but failed and the second time in 2014 when he secured 50 percent of votes and participated in the second round election with Ashraf Ghani, but disagreement over the results led to the creation of national unity government under an agreement based on which Ghani became president and Abdullah Chief Executive Officer (CEO).

Abdullah is fluent in Dari, Pashto and English, and is proficient in Arabic and French as well.

In his electoral ticket, Babar Farahmand, an Uzbek and member of Hizb-i-Junbish Islami party is first and Asadullah Saadati, a Hazara and member of Hizb-i-Wahdat Islami, is second vice-president.

 

Zalmai Rassoul

Dr Zalmai Rassoul, born in 1953 in Kabul, is a son of Dr. Abdul Qayyum Rassoul. He attended Lycée Istiqlal where he graduated as valedictorian before travelling to France to study on a scholarship at the Paris Medical School. He received his MD in 1973.
Rassoul has been serving as minister of foreign affairs of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan since he received a confidence vote from the Wolesi Jirga (Afghan National Assembly) in January 2010.
Prior to his appointment as minister, he served as national security advisor, a post he held from June 2002 to January 2009. He played a constructive role in bringing activities of security institutions in line with the country's foreign policy.
Included in his numerous responsibilities were conducting national threat assessments and the national security policy. Rassoul accompanied President Hamid Karzai on official visits since the establishment of the interim administration in 2001.
An ethnic Pashtun, he remains unmarried and is fluent in Dari, Pashto, French, English and Italian and has working knowledge of Arabic. He has written multiple articles and papers on medical issues in European and American magazines.
Karzai nominated Rassoul as minister of civil aviation and was unanimously approved by the Cabinet in March 2002. Under his leadership, the aviation sector was revived after many years of UN sanctions against the Taliban and Afghanistan.
Rassoul played an important role in Afghanistan's readmission to the International Civil Aviation Organisation. He is one of the presidential candidates, with Abdul Jabbar Taqwa, a Tajik, as his first and Ghulam Ali Wahdat, a Hazara, as his second vice-president.

 

Abdul Latif Pedram

Abdul Latif Pedram was born in 1970 in Badakhshan province and received his primary education from a school in his hometown.

He got education in Dari language and literature from Kabul University. He also had traveled to Iran for getting higher education. Pedram has received his higher education from Institute for Research in Philosophy in Tehran and studied the philosophy of history. He had close friendship with an Iranian poet, Ahmad Shamlo.

He also has written works in poems and literatures. Pedram was initially a supporter of communist government during war against soviet forces in Afghanistan, but soon he opposed soviet invasion of Afghanistan and joined Ahmad Shah Massoud.

Pedram jointly with a number of other culturists, writers and journalist who had joined the resistance against soviet forces, founded Mujahideen Shura Council’s journal.

He started providing lectures in journalism to the cultural committee of the council and spent most of his years in Afghanistan during the war. Pedram who was promoting a separation policy based on language and ethnic groups was expelled amid the Taliban emergence in Afghanistan.

He spent time in France during part of the Taliban regime, where he promoted Persian poetry and literature. Pedram has a master’s degree in Islamic studies from the Sorbonne University, Paris. He continued his opposition to the Taliban in France.

Pedram is the co-founder, and head of the Afghanistan National Congress party (Hezb-e-Kongara Milli Afghanistan). He remained as a representing of Badakhshan in the parliament in 2004, 2009 and 2014 presidential elections.

He picked Ihsanullah Haidar, a Hazara, as his first and Mohammad Sadiq Wardak, a Pashtun, as his second vice president.

 

Mohammad Hakim Torsan

Mohammad Hakim Torsan completed bachelor in Dari literature from Kabul University and has worked in different positions in the security sector between 1980 and 1992 in the government of the time.

He had also nominated for president in 2009 presidential election.

Torsan picked Dr. Mohammad Nader Shah Ahmadzai as his first and Mohammad Shafi Qaisari, as his second vice president.

 

Noorul Haq Ulumi

Noorul Haq Ulumi was born in 1941 in Kabul and he is graduated from Habibia High School and then received military education in Military University of Kabul. Ulumi also has degrees in military education from US and USSR.

He served as a trainer in Afghanistan High Training Center of Army for 11 years.

Ulumi has also worked in different military positions such as chief of staff, acting commander of ‘Military Corps No. 1’ commander of ‘Military Corps No. 2’ in Kandahar and head of public order forces for southern zone of the country.

He founded again the People’s Democratic Party of Afghanistan (PDPA) under National Unity Party of Afghanistan and is executive chief of this party.

Ulumi also served as representative of Kandahar people in the parliament’s 15th legislative term and served as interior minister under the national unity government.

Ulumi has picked Bashir Bizhnaz, a Tajik, as his first and Mohamamd Naim Ghayor as his second vice-president in his electoral ticket.

 

Dr. Faramarz Tamana

Faramarz Tamana, born in Herat province, has two Ph.D degrees in international relations and international studies from Tehran and Jawaharlal Nehru Universities, India.

He has 10-year experience in teaching in different universities of the country and has served as director of Center for Strategic Studies of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, for several years.

Tamana was also an Afghan diplomat in 2002 and served as spokesman of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. After his diplomatic mission, he worked as a culture expert in Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) after 2008. He has written two books in research and 30 academic and research articles.

In his electoral ticket, Tamana chosen Sayed Qeyas Sayed, a Pashtun, as his first and Mohammad Amin Reshadat, a Hazara, as his second vice-president.

 

Mohammad Hanif Atmar:

Mohammad Hanif Atmar was born in 1969 in Laghman province. He completed bachelor level education in rural development and master level education in International relations and post conflict development from the York English University. He also completed studies in information technology and computer language.

During 1991-2001, Atmar worked in different NGOs in the areas of humanitarian programmes, rehabilitation or refugees and displaced persons.

In the post-Taliban era during Hamid Karzai’s presidency, Atmar worked as minister of rural rehabilitation and development. In 2006 he was appointed as the minister of education, in 2009 was appointed as the Minister of Interior and served there for three years.

Atmar speaks in Pashto, Dari, English and Urdu. In his presidential team, Mohammad Younis Qanoni from Jamiat-i-Islami Afghanistan who also served as second vice president his first deputy and Mohammad Mohaqiq, from hazara ethnic group and head of the Wahdat-i-Islami political part and current deputy CEO is second deputy.

 

Gulbuddin Hekmatyar:

Gulbuddin Hekmatyar was born in 1947 in Kunduz province. He was the student of engineering faculty at Kabul University when became controversial for his political activities and was unable to complete his higher education.

He became member of the Jawanan-i-Musalman Union in 1970 and was sent to the prison in 1972 for the alleged murder of university student Syedal Khandanik and was able to flee to Pakistan after military coup on Sardar Daud Khan.

Hekmatyar is a political figure of the country who served as the prime minister and remained a key leader during Jihad against Soviet Union. After the falloff Dr. Najibullah’s government Hekmatyar was appointed as the prime minister in line with the Peshawar declaration but deep difference among the Jihadi leaders resulted in civil war in Afghanistan.

Fazal Hadi Wazin from the Turktabar ethnic group of Afghanistan is his first deputy and Mufti Hafizurrahman Naqi from Tajik ethnic community is his second deputy.

 

Rahmatullah Nabil:

Rahmatullah Nabil was born in the Jaghato district of central Maidan Wardak province in 1969. He is graduated from construction engineering faculty and can speak in Pashto, Dari and English Languages.

Babil worked in different positions in the government institutions and served as the deputy head of National Security Council internal communication till 2004.

He latter incepted the concept for President Protective Service (PPS) and headed the force.

In 2010, Nabil was appointed as the head of the National Directorate of Security (NDS) and after two years of service he was appointed deputy head of the National Security Council.

In his presidential team, Gen. Murad Ali Murad from hazara ethnic group is nominee for first vice president and Masuda Jalal from Tajik ethnic group as nominee for deputy vice president.

 

Enayatullah Hafeez:

Enayatullah Hafeez was born in the Behsud district of Maidan Wardak province in 1978 and hailed from the Hazara ethnicity group. He completed his bachelor education in English literature and master degree in business. He served as advisor to the Ministry of Transportation from the past few years.

Jannat Khan Fahim is his first deputy and Abdul Jameel Sherani is his second deputy in his presidential team.

 

Mohammad Ibrahim Alkozai:

He is the head of Alkozai tribe grand council and jumped into the presidential race with promise and practice slogan.

His first deputy is Khadija Ghaznavi and second deputy is Syed Samai Keyani.

 

Ahmad Walli Masoud

The brother of former northern alliance commander Ahmad Shah Masoud, Ahmad Walli Masoud was born in 1964 in Kabul City.

He completed his master level education from the Westminster University of the United Kingdom and served as the head of Ahmad Shah Masoud Foundation.

On the direction of Ahmad Shah Masoud, he launched political activities in the foreign and returned to Afghanistan during Ustad Rabbani government.

He was then sent to the United Kingdom as the ambassador of Afghanistan and served there for sometimes.

With the slogan of change he entered the presidential race. His first depty is Farida Mohmand a former minister of higher education and second deputy is Abdul Latif Nazari, a university teacher.

 

Eng. Mohammad Shahab Hakimi:

Eng. Mohammad Shahab Hakimi completed his bachelor degree in agriculture and received his master level degree in management from the US University in Pakistan.

He worked as the head of MDC for many years, headed the Afghans campaign against mines and served as teacher at Kabul University.

In his presidential team, Abdul Ali Surabi is his first deputy and Noor-ul-Habib Aser his second deputy.

 

Noor Rahman Liwal

Noor Rahman Liwal is an Afghan businessman and head of technical companies. He was among those who registered as a president in the last hours.

His first deputy is Abdul Hadi Zulhekmat and second deputy is Yahya Yawar.

 

Shaida Abdali:

Shaida Abdali entered the presidential election race with Abdul Basir Salangi, his first deputy and Zulfiqar Omaid his second deputy.

He served as former ambassador of Afghanistan to Indian for six years.

 

Syed Noorullah Jalili

Noorullah Jalili is a political activist, who has been active politican from the past several years.

Khalil Roman is his first deputy while Chiragh Ali Chiragh is his second deputy.