The Meshrano Jirgaon Sunday said southern Ghazni province would not be ready as the Asian capital of Islamic civilisation by 2013 due to delays in preparatory work and urged relevant authorities to brief the house on the subject next week.
Ghazni City, the provincial capital, was selected to serve as the capital next year by the Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (ISESCO) at a conference held in Tripoli, Libya, in 2007.
A Senate delegation that visited Ghazni to assess the progress of renovation works and revival of the city’s cultural heritage presented its report to the house.
Maulvi Hamdullah Munib, the house religious and cultural commission head and member of the delegation, said most historic monuments had been rebuilt by the Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT), but the government was yet to do anything.
He estimated that at least $50 million (2.5 billion afs) were needed to prepare the province as a major cultural centre, but only $17 million had been pledged by the government so far.
Of the 30 monuments to be renovated by 2013, only 10 had been refurbished over the past four years, he explained, saying residents wanted the reconstruction of all sites before 2013.
Munib acknowledged that local officials and residents were suffering from two setbacks — the finance ministry’s failure to transfer money on time and occupation of the Markazi Saqafat-i-Islami (Islamic Cultural Centre) by the Afghan National Army (ANA).
Chairing the session, First Deputy Chairman Mohammad Alam Ezedyar said the ministries and local officials had only planned the projects over the past four years, but failed to implement them.
He feared: “Ghazni will not be ready to serve as the centre of Islamic culture if roads, airport, the Islamic Cultural Centre, the main mosque and tourist hubs are not rebuilt.”
Lawmakers decided to summon next week relevant officials from finance, information and culture, agriculture and livestock, energy and water, rural rehabilitation and women’s affairs ministries to brief them on their progress.