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In Kabul, lack of transparency alleged in aid distribution

In Kabul, lack of transparency alleged in aid distribution

author avatar
2 Mar 2023 - 20:57
In Kabul, lack of transparency alleged in aid distribution
author avatar
2 Mar 2023 - 20:57

KABUL (Pajhwok): A number of destitute people in Kabul are complaining about a lack of transparency in the distribution of aid and claim mostly undeserving individuals are given the assistance, but officials insist the aid should be given in exchange for work.

The international community cut off all but emergency aid to Afghanistan after the Taliban’s takeover in August 2021, with the US freezing more than $9 billion in assets belonging to the Afghan central bank. As a result, the level of unemployment and poverty in the country increased.

Later, some countries and the United Nations started a humanitarian aid distribution program to prevent the Afghans’ economic situation from getting worse.

But some people say the aid distribution is not transparent and many undeserving people have been benefitting from this program.

While complaining about unemployment and poverty, Zainab, a resident of Khushal Khan area in Kabul city, told Pajhwok that she had many times attempted to get aid, but she was not included in the list of those in need.

“I have seen several of my relatives and neighbors who even own cars and are economically sound receiving the aid that is supposed to be given to the poor.”

She asked the government to ensure the aid was justly distributed. She said the caretaker government should seriously evaluate the aid distribution process and prevent corruption in it.

Abdul Hamid, a 35-year-old resident of the 11th district of Kabul city, father of five children, told Pajhwok that he was working in a non-governmental organization, but became unemployed after the fall of the previous government.

Struggling with joblessness and economic problems, Hamid said he had not received any help from any organization.

He also complained about the lack of transparency in the distribution of aid and alleged nepotism in the process, saying many undeserving people received the aid.

He added: “My name has been many times written in the lists of deserving people, but I have never been helped. I don’t know why they write our names and take ID cards from us.”

Hamid also sought transparency in the distribution of aid.

But officials say from now on the aid should be distributed in exchange for work as it will help address people’s complaints about lack of transparency in the distribution process.

Kabul governor Maulvi Mohammad Qasim on Thursday launched the distribution of 500 metric tons of pulses provided by the Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock to the needy people in Kabul, saying like other provinces a lot of aid had been distributed to the people in Kabul.

He said poverty was increasing and it was due to lack of transparency in the distribution of aid. He said the aid distribution process had not been transparent as should be.

He said if the aid was given to the poor people in exchange for work, it would ensure 100 percent transparency in the process of distribution of aid.

In the last one month alone, the governor said, the World Food Program (WFP) donated $800,000 and as many other institutions had provided enough aid.

The governor said he had seen with his own eyes a shopkeeper unloading aid items in his shop. “Deserving and undeserving people are easily identified.”

He said that a category should be created in which 40 percent of the aid should be given free of charge and 60 percent in exchange for work.

The governor said complete transparency had been taken into account in the distribution of the latest aid.

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