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    Call to summon ministers over failure to use uplift budget

    KABUL (PAN): Wolesi Jirga members on Sunday called for summoning the ministers who could not utilise their development budget during the last solar year.

    Addressing the lower house, Fiscal and Budget Commission chief, Amir Khan Yar, said only 39 percent of the 111 billion afghanis ($2.2b) development outlay had been spent so far.

    "The ministers who even did not use half of the budget should be summoned and if they fail to provide satisfactory answers, they should be disqualified," he suggested.

    MP Asadullah Sadati from Daikundi province also called for disqualifying the ministers who failed to use 50 percent of their budgets.

    But due to lack of quorum, parliamentarians could not take a final decision on the ministries' budget reports. The quorum would be complete tomorrow and Parliament would make a decision, said first deputy speaker, Khalid Pashtun.

    Under Article 98 of the Constitution, definite accounts for the previous fiscal year shall be submitted by the government to the Wolesi Jirga within six months of the new solar year.

    On November 28, Ministry of Finance officials asked the national assembly to increase its monitoring of development activities by all ministries for the better use of the development budget.

    Speaking to Pajhwok Afghan News, ministry spokesman, Aziz Shams, said of the 74 billion afghanis development budget for the current solar year, 30 percent had so far been used over the past eight months.

    The main reasons behind the failure include low capacity of ministries, a delay in approval of the budget, insecurity, lack of essential facilities, parallel set-ups by foreigners and inadequate monitoring by the Wolesi Jirga.