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Paktia getting far less resource than its population

Paktia getting far less resource than its population

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Jan 14, 2020 - 11:29

GARDEZ (Pajhwok): Southeastern Paktia province continues to receive resources on the basis of a population census conducted 44 years ago, says an official.

Asghar Sidiqyar, head of the statistics department for southeastern zone, said they collected information on various population-related issues from different government institutions.

In an exclusive interview with Pajhwok Afghan News, he said the details included the issuances of national identity cards and registration of newborns and returnees.

Sidiqyar called exact population figures central to the implementation of projects and humanitarian services.

He recalled a census had been initiated in Paktia three years ago with the assistance of USAIDinfo-icon, but it could not be completed for security reasons.

“Paktia’s population issue is very important and should be addressed because the current figures are not accurate. The provincial population is much higher than the 1976 census figures,” he claimed.

The official insisted the resources provided to Paktia were grossly insufficient for its population. For example, he said, there were three doctors for every 10,000 people.

Sidiqyar informed that a survey of families and their income had been launched in Paktia. To be completed within a year, the survey would determine the level of poverty, unemployment and overall living standards of Paktia residents.

“The services and facilities which are currently being provided to the province are inadequate. Social, economic, cultural and other public services should increase according to population growth,” he remarked.

Provincial Council chief Abdul Malik Zazai told Pajhwok many problems existed in healthinfo-icon and educationinfo-icon sectors at the district level and there were no telecom services in some areas.

He complained the southeastern zone remained more backward compared than other zones of the country -- a problem that must be resolved on a priority basis.

Ehsan Khan, a civil societyinfo-icon activist, urged the government to take the issue seriously and conduct a new census in the province.

sa/mud

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