Farah, Badghis PCs also join protest against WJ
FARAH CITY/QALA-I-NAW (Pajhwok): Protest rallies were staged on Monday in western Farah and northwestern Badghis provinces against Wolesi Jirga’s decision barring provincial councils from overseeing the performance of provincial entities.
On Wednesday, the lower house amended the law on provincial councils by a majority vote, barring PCs from evaluating and overseeing the performance of local government departments.
The decision sparked protests by PC members in several provinces and they closed their offices to put pressure on the lower house to reverse its decision.
Nearly 200 people, some coming from nearby districts, staged a protest rally in Farah City before noon.
A member of the provincial council from Farah City, Abdul Wakil, said parliamentarians took such decisions because they knew nothing about the situation in provinces, calling as critical the PC oversight role in preventing administrative corruption.
Another participant of the rally, civil society activist, Syed Ahmad, said the provincial councils should be given back their right to monitoring. He said depriving PCs from their oversight role was aimed at paving the ground for corruption to continue.
Elsewhere, dozens of people staged a protest demonstration against the Wolesi Jirga’s decision in the capital of Badghis province, Qala-i-Naw.
Haji Bahauddin Qadsi, the provincial council head, told Pjhwok Afghan News provincial councils had always monitored development projects, administrative affairs and particularly welfare projects and consulted the authorities concerned in this regard. He said barring provincial councils from monitoring such activities would increase corruption.
A Qala-i-Naw resident and participant of the rally, Mohammad Amin Jamshidi, said PC members were public representatives, who were answerable to the people. Therefore, he said, the public reps should not be deprived of their right to oversee all affairs in the province.
Acting in compliance with orders from President Ashraf Ghani, the Independent Directorate of Local Government (IDLG) has launched work two days ago on a policy outlining oversight role for provincial councils.
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