KABUL (SW) – Members of the Wolesi Jirga (lower house) on Wednesday called for probe into multi-million dollar U.S. funded aid program ‘Promote’ in Afghanistan.

Taking part in general debate during the session, member of the house Khan Agha Rezaey said the house should form a commission to investigate this project. He also called for probing the government expenditures in the past year and the expenses from the Code-91 of the annual budget.

Echoing these views, another MP Mohammad Naseem Mudeer said in his views that most of the projects with suspected instances of corruption have figures close to the president involved. He added individuals close to the president are also striving to interfere in the revenue collection units of the finance ministry for corruption.

Meanwhile, Dawa Khan Meenapal, deputy spokesman for the president, rejected these allegations. He clarified the ‘Promote’ project has been running under direct supervision of the U.S. government. He told Salam Watandar that the presidency was not influencing recruitment process in any department.

The Special Inspector General for Afghan Reconstruction (SIGAR) said in a new report two years back that the ‘Promote’ has helped somewhere between no women and roughly 60. The USAID’s “Promote” program is the agency’s “largest women’s empowerment program in (USAID) history,” according to the program’s website. It was supposed to train Afghan women to enter the private and public sectors, and then help them become eligible for promotions in their fields. And it was intended to extend those training and hiring benefits to 75,000 Afghan women.

But, SIGAR claimed to have found that in the three years since 2015, the number of women who found “new or better” employment was closer to 55.



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