A president submissive to the rich and powerful

Wednesday, 30 November 2016 04:22 Written by  Heart of Asia Read 92 times

The usurpation of government posts by some individuals is described as a major barrier to good governance and development affairs in Afghanistan. There are people in the Afghan government who have occupied one post for over a decade. Atta Mohammad Noor, the acting governor of Balkh, and Seema Samar, the chairwoman of the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC), are just two examples, and there are legions of individuals serving in same government slots for more than 10 years. 

 

While the government has no justification for these people to remain in charge of affairs anymore, there is one factor to blame for it: the might of these individuals and the weakness of the central government. President Ghani had even promised implicitly to sack Atta Mohammad Noor from the governorship, yet he is serving as acting governor with half of Ghani’s term already over. 

The Presidential Palace even doesn’t have the nerve to employ the term of acting governor to Noor. In a presidential statement released after President Ghani’s trip to Balkh, Atta Mohammad Noor has been called as governor throughout the text except one place. 

 

The feebleness of the central government to an extent where it is unable to dismiss an acting governor is on no account acceptable to the people in the current critical conditions of Afghanistan. The public wants the president to honor his campaign promise of eliminating all parallel governments and power structures. 

Even if the service of Atta Mohammad Noor or similar individuals, who have taken up the reins of government posts for over a decade, is in the general interest, it is enough. The people want a change which can only happen by delegating affairs to qualified and eligible figures. It is futile to expect a change, especially a positive one, from old faces whose past performance is even under question. 

The nation wants a change, and bringing out changes requires categorical decisions by the government, especially the president. Based on this requirement, the president who has already served half of his term should espouse decisiveness and try to deliver on his key promises, one of which was the dismissal of all long-serving officials. He has to bear in mind that Afghans cannot tolerate the appeasement of the rich and powerful for a lifetime.