CHARIKAR (Pajhwok): Hundreds of projects could not be implemented in central Parwan province this year as a result of reallocation of budgets to fund the government’s measures to limit the spread of Covid-19 pandemic, an official said on Tuesday,
Rural Rehabilitation and Development director MahfuzullahFakor told Pajhwok Afghan News that 400 development projects worth 1.7 billion afghanis were to be implemented under the Citizen Charter Program in different parts of Parwan province this year.
According to Fakor, only 25 of these projects have been completed and another 26 schemes are in different stages of completion.
However, he said the remaining 349 projects which would cost 74,959,000 afghanis could be implemented this ongoing solar year.
According to Fakor, the 349 projects included construction of bridges, culverts, drinking water networks, retaining walls, water heads, health clinics, graveling roads and river embankments.
“The main reason for the non-implementation of these projects is readjustment of state funds to combat coronavirus in Afghanistan,” he said.
Without elaborating, he said, some other issues and challenges also affected the implementation of projects, but the main factor was reallocation of funds to fight coronavirus.
The non-implementation of the schemes has worried local residents.
Hamidullah, a resident of provincial capital Charikar’s Khwaja Sayaran area, expressed his concern about non-implementation of the projects.
He said a clean drinking water plant for 200 families of their village was among the stalled projects.
He said: “I went to the Citizen Charter program office to know when the project will be executed but officials there said the budget has been cut to fund Covid-19 containment measures.”
Abdul Jamil, a resident of Sia Gard district, said floods washed away the water head in their area three years ago and it was scheduled to be rebuilt this year, but was delayed.
He said area people were worried because the water head project would meet their drinking water need. He said water was wasting following the destruction of the water head.
Abdul Khalil Fazli, a member of the provincial council, and Shafiullah Musfiq, a civil society leader in Parwan, said the government was unable to properly address people’s demands and it should have allocated more money for the projects.
For decades, Afghanistan’s economic situation has not been good while the spread of Covid-19 further exacerbated the economic problems and also took a toll on many sectors.
The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) has said Covid-19 plunged Afghanistan economy into recession and that an addition 30 percent aid was needed over the next five years to address the problems caused by the pandemic.
“This Investigative Report was produced with the financial support of the European Union. Its contents are the sole responsibility of Pajhwok and do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union.”