KABUL: President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani held a virtual discussion with mayors to discuss their precautionary measures and recommendations on fighting covid-19, a statement from the presidential press office said yesterday.
Speaking on behalf of others, a number of mayors articulated their efforts and measures namely public awareness, disinfection and lockdown of cities, control of prices and preventing from hoarding, employment opportunities for daily wagers, and identifying the poor and destitute families to provide them with aids, according to the statement.
They also put forward their suggestions mainly on exempting some businesses from tax, municipality structures and authorities, procurement issues, and providing special benefits and allowances for municipality staff who are at risk of being infected with the coronavirus, the statement added.
First Vice-President Amrullah Saleh said the more empowered municipalities in small cities will contribute to reducing pressure on large cities that will lead to scaling up government’s service delivery.
He stressed the government is taking every possible effort to reach out to the people’s doors through providing services rather than bringing them to the government’s doors.
President Ghani described Afghan urban areas as large, medium, small and border cities with distinctive features, adding that small cities are play a significant role in the country, where they will even determine the food prices and requirements of larger cities in the future.
The president, as quoted in the statement, instructed the mayors to categorize tax payers and businesses/entrepreneurs to allow cutting taxes charged by the government. He added that the issues of public health and municipalities workers’ benefits should be discussed to clarify which personnel of municipalities are exposed to the risk of being infected with corona virus.
The president talked over the participation of the country’s mayors in the cabinet meetings via videoconference and said expressed hope the mayors could pass all the tests ahead to prepare the grounds for re-consideration of municipality authorities, the statement added.
The Kabul Times