New Helmand governor vows to retake areas lost to Taliban
LASHKARGAH (Pajhwok): The new governor of southern Helmand province on Sunday identified improved security, good governance, fighting corruption and bringing reforms to military and civil affairs as his priorities.
Hayatullah Hayat was formally introduced as the new governor of Helmand at a ceremony in Lashkargah, the provincial capital.
The governor said he would deal with all officials in accordance with the law and would bring reforms in every field.
“I will end the culture of bossism and will create an office to monitor projects and contracts. Law-breakers will be detained and no one’s approach will be accepted.”
The governor vowed to recapture areas lost to insurgents under a coordinated security plan he had devised. He promised serious attention to the development of the Bust Enterprise, the Kajaki hydropower dam and factories.
Hayat asked the Taliban to shun violence and accept the government’s offer for peace talks.
Maj. Gen. Mohammad Moeen Faqir, the 215th Maiwand Military Corps commander, told the gathering that security problems had declined compared to the last year.
Meshrano Jirga member Mohammad Hashim Alokozay said one-fourth of Helmand land were under Taliban’s control. He asked the new governor to ensure that security forces did not fight for their own benefits.
Meanwhile, lawmaker Nasima Niazai said all problems people faced in Helmand stemmed from a leadership crisis. She said until the leadership crisis persisted, no governor could resolve issues plaguing Helmand.
Provincial council head Karim Khan Atal said 32,000 soldiers were paid salaries while they were sitting free, an issue that needed a strong leadership to tackle and ensure security in the province.
Hayat, who had previously served as governor of central Wardak province for a year, replaces his predecessor Mirza Khan Rahimi in Helmand.
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