President Ghani Attends 2nd National Mayors’ Conference

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Kabul (BNA) President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani participated in the second national mayors conference held at presidential palace on Sunday.
At the beginning of the conference, deputy of mayors and acting director of independent local organs Abdul Baqi Popal spoke and said cities were considered as center of civilization and core of economic, cultural, social and political activities and municipalities were key organ for delivering services to the people. “Cities and municipalities have not been paid attention by governments and political leaders during the past three decades, but now mayors are not responsible for collecting trashes, but due to attention of the country’s President, they are now cities’ owners providing basic services for citizens,” Popal said, asserting that based on instruction of the President, the ministry of finance would provide 100 million AFG for further encouragement of municipalities of Mazar-e-Sharif, Kandahar, Herat, Jalalabad and Lashkargah for considerable increase of incomes.
Meanwhile, six of the country’s municipalities the incomes of which were considerable would be granted 80 million AFG.
In the conference, minister of urban development Sayed Sadat Nadiri while praising the President for his attention to urban sector of the country said due to current coordination, the urban sector could have acted as part of one chain, planned and executed national programs countrywide.
Afterwards, acting mayor for Kabul Abdullah Habibi spoke and said that strategic plan of municipality had been prepared; therefore, all requirements of Kabul city would be met until 2030, adding that the plan would focus on four basic pillars as good urban governance, effective management in urban services, creating enduring infrastructures and city economic development. After hearing speeches of speakers in the conference, the country’s President said, “Today clear capacities are here and are able to bring changes in Afghanistan’s cities because they have clear knowledge, experience, commitment and vision”. “Despite having experiences and higher education and being able to get key jobs in capital, you have gone to remote areas of the country for a will you have to serve the country. This is a very big honor for us because it has proved there is no lack of determination and capacity in Afghanistan,” the country’s President asserted.
President Ghani regarded the conference as significant and added that the conference valued that you have changed from isolated mayors to active ones. “Mayors still had not been owners of their cities, but from now on they will have high voice in a network,” President Ghani said, adding that from now on Kabul’s acting governor representing the country’s mayors would participate in cabinet and high economical sessions.
The country’s President asserted that city was not a physical phenomenon but it was a social phenomenon and those Afghans having thought, knowledge and anticipation were suffering municipalities’ failed system, adding that the people wished that the youth having higher education and experiences should change the cities.
“Your success is to make citizens be real owners of cities,” President asserted.
The President also considered the culture of “Hashr” or collective voluntary work as significant in cleanliness of cities, saying that introduction of city and its vision needed clarification and sound coordination, these all would be possible as a result of leadership and sound management.
The country’s President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani further said that he was committed that mayors were elected based on constitution, but for selection of mayors, they should amend the law and institutions so that municipalities as elected organization have clear vision and capacity.
At the end of his speech, President Ghani said you should change your suggestions to a general plan because he wanted a vision for the whole of Afghanistan, adding that the reasons for success, failing and problems should be clearly discussed.

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