Kandaharis spell out demands on next president

KANDAHAR CITY (Pajhwok): Residents of southern Kandahar province say they want the next president to improve security, electricity, extend government’s writ to remote areas, eliminate corruption, improve education, economy and ensure honourable return of Afghan refugees.
The dragging electoral process has disappointed most Afghans, including Kandaharis, but they still hope the process would complete and the next president would be inaugurated soon.
Kandahar residents say their foremost demand from the new president is improved security.
A resident of Nahr Karez area of Panjwai district, Abdur Rahman, told Pajhwok Afghan News: “We suffered from decades of war and violence, in which we lost our family members and got destroyed our gardens and farms, and currently we live in fear due to landmines in our areas. All these are intolerable and the next president must do something to end all these misfortunes.”
He said everything would be fine if the security situation was improved because there would be no hurdles to the government and people carrying out their routine activities.
A resident of Kandahar City, Syed Jan, urged the next head of the state to provide electricity to citizens, saying officials had failed to honour their promises in this regard over the past 13 years.
“My demand from the next president is that he should provide us electricity. Officials in the last 13 years have repeatedly promised to electrify our homes but they did nothing,” the 36-year-old said.
Haji Mohammad Nasar, a dweller of Ghorak district, demanded the next president extend the government’s writ and services to remote areas so that people’s trust in the government could be strengthened.
“People in remote parts and districts are out of government’s coverage and deprived of basic facilities of life including security, healthcare, telecommunications and others,” he said, adding that if the next government wanted to win the hearts and minds the people he should provide them with these facilities.
Haji Mohammad Sarwar, a dweller of Sarkari Bagh area of Arghandab district, said agriculture remained the key source of income for residents and the next should put modernize the agriculture sector and find market for fruits such as grapes, pomegranates, watermelons, fig and others produced in Kandahar. Sarwar added currently these products were sold at throwaway prices or decayed due to lack of storage facilities.
A resident of Dand district, Bismillah, who has one of his legs disabled disable, urged the upcoming president to fight corruption and appoint people in government offices on merit.
The 45-year-old said most government departments were rife with corruption and people who had connections in the government or were powerful were able to find government jobs.
A resident of Kandahar City, Sana, asked the next president to improve the quality of education and help women get their rights and job opportunities.
She added the war and violence had rendered a large number of women widows and children orphans and many educated women could not find jobs.
Haji Abdul Basir, another dweller of Kandahar City, said violence in the country forced many Afghans migrate to Pakistan, where they were trained to work against Afghanistan.
He asked the new president to pave the ground for a dignified return of Afghan refugees from Pakistan and other countries, a move, he believed would decrease interferences of other countries in Afghanistan.

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