Posted September 16, 2009 7:20 p.m.
Ghani revolutionizes Afghan political campaigns
A modern campaign for â€˜a man of the peopleâ€™
This summer Devine Mulvey had the privilege to work with Dr. Ashraf Ghani, Presidential candidate for Afghanistan, to produce television, web, and radio ads for his campaign. We were also pleased to work alongside our friends James Carville and Paul Begala as the campaign progressed. Although Devine Mulvey has done many international campaigns, this is the first year we’ve ever made ads in Dari and Pashto, the official languages of Afghanistan.
Dr. Ghani is the only Muslim to have been nominated to head the United Nations and the World Bank. After the Taliban was ousted in 2001, Ghani stepped up and served as Afghanistan’s Finance Minister, implementing extensive and difficult reforms including issuing a new currency and instituting regular reporting to the cabinet and the people of Afghanistan in an effort to increase transparency. During his time as Finance Minister, he “earned a reputation as notoriously incorruptible.” Dr. Ghani left his post in 2004 due to his growing concern about corruption in the Karzai administration, and eradicating this corruption was a main focal point of his campaign. “Vote 12” highlights Dr. Ghani’s accomplishments and outlines his plan to bring electricity to more villages, create jobs, provide clean water, and fight corruption.
Amid the 43 candidates running for President, Dr. Ghani was a front runner along with Hamid Karzai and Abdullah Abdullah, and ran one of the most modern campaigns in the 2009 election. Using television, radio, online donations, and student volunteers, Dr. Ghani helped shake up the election and change the way Afghans think about politics according to the New York Times. “Hope” was initially produced in English and aired on Afghan satellite TV stations in the U.S. It was such a powerful ad that it was subsequently produced in Dari and aired in Afghanistan, where a station censored the line about President Obama disapproving of a law that Karzai signed.
Despite threats and violence from the Taliban, millions of Afghans showed up to vote in the August 20th election. And while the results are still out, the ballots are being counted and major claims of election fraud are being investigated, the people of Afghanistan had the courage to go out and have their voices heard.
We are proud to have participated in such a historic campaign and look forward to hearing the election results.