Karzai orders work on power projects, aid to flood-hit families

KABULinfo-icon (PANinfo-icon): President Hamid Karzai on Saturday asked the departments concerned to initiate practical work on hydro power projects in central Bamyan and other southern provinces on a priority basis.

Karzai said this while chairing an extraordinary meeting involving ministers of finance, economy, energy & power, US ambassador, Da Afghanistaninfo-icon Breshna Sherkat (DABS) chief, an Asian Development Bank representative and officials of donor agencies, a statement issued from his office said.

Karzai, stressing importance of power projects, asked the officials concerned and donor agencies to complete the projects on a priority basis.

After discussions, participants of the meeting agreed that electricity imported to Kabul should be extended to Paktia and Logar provinces through the extension of transmission lines. They said the project should be completed in one year.

The meeting also discussed over the Kajaki power dam in Helmand and extension of power lines from Kabul to Kandahar. They also decided to launch practical work on power projects in Bamyan, saying development work on the Kajaki power dam would begin this year and complete in one year.

Karzai also called for preparing a master plan for electricity production until December this year, asking officials and donor countries to evolve their policies in line with the plan.

Construction work on Kabul, Logar and Paktia hydro power project would be launch by the US in August this year and the projects would be completed until August 2013, the meeting was told.

Karzai also stressed the need for maintaining quality work on projects through increased cooperation between the departments concerned and donors.

Meanwhile, the president ordered the authorities concerned to provide all possible assistance to flood-affected families in northern Takhar and Baghlan provinces.

Two days ago, the UN humanitarian chief said almost 500,000 Afghans were internally displaced as a result of conflict and natural hazards, 185,000 of which were recorded in 2011 alone.

According to Takhar governor, Abdul Jabbar Taqwa, 32 people were killed and a dozen others were wounded after days of heavy floods ravaged Ashkmash district and several villages on the outskirts of the provincial capital.

However, his spokesman on Friday told Pajhwok Afghan News 32 people had been killed and 20 others missing in the floods.

Taqwa said the families of those killed in the natural disasters had been provided financial assistance and relief goods would be dispatched to the families soon.

Baghlan Governor Munshi Abdul Majeed said 100 houses, a number of government buildings and agricultureinfo-icon lands were washed away in flash floods triggered by days of rainfall in Nehrin and Borki districts on Wednesday.

A statement issued from the Presidential Palace said President Karzai phoned governors of Takhar and Baghlan and directed them to travel to the affected areas in person and assess the situation.

He directed the defence ministry and the natural disasters management authority to provide all possible assistance to the affected families at the earliest.


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