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7 Ministers to Appear Before Mps Next Week

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KABUL – The Wolesi Jirga has asked seven ministers to appear before it next Monday and Wednesday, an official said on Monday. The decision came at a joint meeting of heads of parliamentary commission a day earlier, Wolesi Jirga Secretary Syed Ikram told reporters on assembly premises. Mines Minister Wahidullah Shahrani, Economy Minister Abdul Hadi Arghandiwal, Commerce Minister Anwarul Haq Ahadi and Information and Culture Minister Syed Makhdoom Raheen will appear before Monday’s session.

Ikram said Water and Energy Minister Ismail Khan, Education Minister Ghulam Farooq Wardak and Counternarcotics Minister Zarar Ahmad Muqbil were summoned for Wednesday. He added three ministers had claimed that they had spent more than half of development budgets allocated to them in 2011. Higher Education Minister Obaidullah Obaid, Urban Development Minister Hassan Abdulhai, Interior Minister Mujtaba Patang and Defence Minister Bismillah Mohammadi will appear before lawmakers on April 6.

Ikram said the house would not put ballot box to bring a no-confidence vote against the ministers summoned because some of them had not been on their current portfolios in 2011. The deadline comes two days after MPs accused administrative board members and some of their colleagues of trying to exclude the issue from the house agenda since the assembly returned from its winter break.

Last year, the house summoned the ministers for under-spending development budgets. The parliament accuses them of failing to spend more than 50 percent of their allocations. Seven of those summoned appeared before the house in December to explain their positions, but the rest failed to turn up despite warnings of no-confidence motions. (PAN)

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