Speaking at the 5th Annual European Anti-Corruption Conference in Kabul on Wednesday, the European Union envoy in Afghanistan Pierre Mayaudon, said the issue of corruption in Afghanistan has been obstructing the country’s socioeconomic development and that there is a need to take concrete steps towards fighting the trend which has been crippling golden opportunities for Afghanistan.
Mayaudon said fighting corruption can contribute to expediting the peace process in the country.
“There is no sustainable peace without trust and combating corruption is definitely a way to build trust and confidence. Not just among the elite, but I would say [among] Afghan society,” said Mayaudon.
Addressing the same event, President Ashraf Ghani said corruption needs the contribution of the whole nation.
“The major price which we lost is national and international trust. In every international conference, we saw lectures asking Afghanistan to focus on your corruption issue. There was a golden opportunity available for Afghanistan and this gold opportunity gone waste,” said Ghani.
Ghani called on the international community to help Afghanistan in its strides against corruption in public offices. However, he did not present any figure what the extent of the phenomenon is.
Critics say that the Afghan government has had a number of measures over the past five years to curb corruption in public offices.
“The government has taken a series of measures to fight corruption over the past five years but it has not established an independent and non-political institution which could assess corruption in higher and lower levels,” a researcher at Integrity Watch Afghanistan, Naser Taimoori said.