Bamiyan: Karzai arrived Bamiyan on Thursday to inaugurate the construction project of a road connecting Bamiyan to Yakawlang.
Contrary to other provinces, Bamiyan is the most peaceful, where NATO troops and PRT Teams move around without much guarding. But when Karzai arrived, over 200 Security Guards–all Pashtoon–had seized all the roads and junctions, restricting movement of vehicles and commuters.
The President was received with a traditional Hazaragi welcome song, Manda Nashi, by students of Shireen Hazara High School. Muhammad Ibrahim Akbari, Wuluswal of Panjaw, formally inaugurated the session, saluting the President by calling him “dear and respectful leader.”
Governor of Bamiyan, Habiba Sarabi, was the first speaker. She talked about the grievances of Bamiyan Province, particularly the lack of construction work.
Speaker of the Provincial Assembly, Ishaq Poya, also criticized the lack of reconstruction work in what he called “the worst hit province by the Taliban, where people were slaughtered during massacres.”
The Japanese Ambassador said that Bamiyan, due to its rich historical heritage, has been a prime commitment of Japan, and it would continue to remain so in the future.
Vice President Karim Khalili hoped Bamiyan would be developed in the future. He promised the Government would pay more attention in this regard.
Karzai said, “I am lucky to meet my promise of connecting Bamiyan to Yakawlang. I see Bamiyan has improved a lot in the last two years, but more construction is needed, since some of the poorest people of the world reside in Bamiyan and Hazarajat.”
He further cautioned, “Be attentive! The enemy does not want us improve and they may target the Bamiyan-Yekawalang road.”
Later, Karzai and some of his cabinet members, along with Governor Habiba Sarabi and the Japanese Embassador inagurated the construction work of the highway.
More than $60 million is expected to be invested on the Bamiyan-Yakawlang highway. The Japanese government will provide $21 million, while the Asian Development Bank will fund the the rest.
Karzai had promised at the outset of his presidency that he would work on the development of a highway connecting Bamiyan to Kabul. However, Bamiyan still stands in the central highlands largely isolated from the rest of the country.