Latest news and happening of Afghanistan and region…
The Ministry of Finance informed that government has predicted a budget deficit of 12 billion Afghanis coming fiscal year. To cope up, the ministry will continue make up the deficit from national revenue or with the help of international aid.
“Unfortunately, the deficit in the budget is at least 12 billion Afghanis. In the next year, we will try to finance this deficit from national revenues by increasing monitoring and by providing more facilities in customs and finance offices. Meanwhile the ministry will address the deficit from non-tax organizations,” said Shamroz Khan Masjidi, a spokesman for the Ministry of Finance.
“If we cannot address the deficit, we will enter into discussions with our international partners at a suitable time and will try to address it with international aid,” he said.
The Ministry of Finance has allocated 399 billion Afghanis for the 1398 fiscal year, 69% being allocated for the standard budget, and 39% has been allocated for the development budget.
Arif Wahidi, a former deputy Ghazni governor, told Reporterly that a number of people from Uruzgan, Jaghori and Malistan have protested and called on the government to prevent a humanitarian catastrophe in these areas.
He has said that so far no one has responded to the demands of these people.
He further informed that for the past ten days, the assault by Taliban has begun on these areas starting from Uruzgan Khas.
It was also added that for more than a week, more than 100 civilians and military personnel have been killed and more than 700 others have been displaced and houses have been looted by this group.
Mr Wahidi continued to emphasise that they approached the government, but government only declared this war as ethnic dispute.
He also informed that for the past 4 days, the war has been brought to Jaghori district, and currently, the Taliban themselves have suffered heavy casualties, and there is also an ongoing fighting at most of the borders of this district.
Mr Wahidi said that since 5 P.M yesterday, the insurgents have also attacked the Malistan district. And now security and defense forces are involved in clash with the insurgents in vicinity of district center.
“This is the why the people of Uruzgan, Jaghori, Malistan, and the elders and civic activists went to the parliament today and protested.
The demands of these people is to prevent a humanitarian disaster in those areas. People call on the government, the international community and NATO to stop the humanitarian catastrophe,” Mr Wahidi stated.
The Independent Election Commission announced on Saturday that the Presidential Elections for Afghanistan will be held on April 20, 2019.
IEC Chief Abdul Sayyad also clarified that the schedule and timeline for elections will be released in the next 2-3 days.
With respect to Ghazni’s Parliamentary elections, he said “The parliamentary elections in Ghazni province which could not be held, will be held when the controversies in this province are resolved.”
This comes after political parties have called on election commissions to not cause any delays in various electoral proceedings, including result announcement of parliamentary elections as well as conduction of Presidential elections.
Local officials in Herat inform that an explosion occurred inside the office of Kohsan district.
Herat governor spokesman Jilani Farhad confirming the incident to Reporterly said that the explosion occurred an hour ago.
According to him the district governor, Amir Haftbala was killed and two others were wounded as a result of the explosion.
Amir Haftbala, was recently appointed as a district governor of Kohsan.
The Presidential Palace on Saturday stated that the President, while on his trip to Bamiyan province inaugurated the Doshi-Bamiyan road construction project accompanied with second VP, Sarwar Danish and a number of ministers.
At the ceremony, Yama Yari, the minister of public works, said that “the Doshi-Bamyan road is 25 kilometers long, costing $ 27 million. A total of 28 projects are underway in the Bamyan province, with a total cost of over 20 billion AFN, which will be implemented during the current year and in the coming years”.
The Minister of Public Works said that the projects are one of the largest investments of the National Unity Government in Bamiyan province, with the aim of eliminating the geographic prison and interconnecting within domestic and the regional markets.
The statement added that the president spoke and congratulated the people of Bamyan province on the inauguration of Doshi-Bamyan road construction, saying that the central Afghanistan would become the beating heart of Afghanistan, instead of being an isolated point.
The president also pointed out that the importance of the Doshi-Bamiyan road is that it is an alternative to Salang road, because Salangs need a major reconstruction, and this road will connect Central Afghanistan to the Northeast Afghanistan and then Central Asia.
President Ghani said that these fundamental corridors, guarantee the “national unity, on the one hand, and the create a national economy on the other, linking all of Afghanistan together and providing our connection as a point of contact between Central and South Asia.”
The President directed the Ministry of Public Works to implement the projects in a timely manner and take them seriously.
Additionally, it was stated by Shah Hussain Murtazawi, the deputy spokesman to president that the president issued a decree to create a military unit holding up to 443 personnel. The task is to provide security inside the Bamiyan province, the security of road construction projects and to launch operations. The National Army will provide arrangements for the deployment of this unit.
Shah Hussain Murtazawi, Deputy spokesman to president announced that
the president has issued a decree to create a military unit holding up to 443 personnel.
The task is to provide security inside the Bamiyan province, the security of road construction projects and to launch operations. The National Army provides arrangements for the deployment of this unit.
On Friday, President Ghani visited Bamiyan to inaugurate projects, of which, the notable one was the electricity project.
Taliban have launched their assault on the center of Malistan district, Mer Adena, as informed to Reporterly by Arif Wahedi, former deputy governor of Ghazni and elder of Malistan.
Bashir Ali Shafaq, Wahdat-e Mardom party provincial chief in Ghazni also confirmed Taliban assault, stating that few government forces are present to resist the Taliban attack.
The Anti-Corruption Justice Centre & Special Inspector General of Afghanistan Reconstruction unravelled a huge defraud case of an official from Ministry of Interior. In SIGAR’s latest quarterly report, it was pointed out that the ACJC court convicted a Ministry of Interior Official for embezzling $1.7 million. Among others who were convicted of being involved were an MoI procurement officer and the deputy minister of MoI.
Major General Kohistani, who was convicted, was the director of MoI Police Cooperative Fund. SIGAR and ACJC carried out joint investigation to uncover the “fraud and abuse of Cooperative Fund by Kohistani”.
Among other oversight findings of SIGAR, there were cases of theft or fraud by American contractors.
There was also a case of arrest of a French citizen who was imposting as an American procurement officer.
The worrying trend is that the number of suspensions and debarments by SIGAR’s findings has increased over the years. However, this was only with respect to contractual and procurement activities in US Funded reconstruction project.
The USAID announced on social media on Saturday, that in order to provide “reliable and affordable electricity to Afghan residences and businesses in Kandahar City”, they have supported a project in collaboration with DABS, (Afghanistan’s national electric utility), which is 10-megawatt hybrid solar photovoltaic power project.
In April this year, the International Solar Alliance had urged Afghanistan to join the organisation due to the extensive sunlight coverage the country is under for a good part of the year. Such invitations underline the solar potential of Afghanistan.
The Ministry of Defense has announced in a statement that a total of 36 insurgents were killed across 3 provinces in the past 24 hours.
As a result ANA airstrikes and clearing operations in Ghazni, Helmand and Logar, several insurgents were killed and many others were wounded as well.
In Helmand, 10 mines were found and destroyed as well.
On Friday, President Ghani reached Bamiyan and proceeded to inaugurate several projects, as per a statement from Presidential Palace.
A notable project in Bamiyan was the electricity project which included construction of electrical substation, extension of the electrical network and the project’s total cost stands at $80 million.
Before his arrival at Bamiyan, the president had visited Daikundi. President’s deputy spokesperson confirmed that the president was set to inaugurate some projects and also meet with tribal elders and officials.
The projects include reconstruction of the 9-km road in the provincial capital Neilli, 5.5-megawatt solar power project, water reservoir scheme of Sokhtam Dam, and electricity supply project.