Security chiefs face wrath of parliament, despite VP and NSA’s absence

During a special sitting of Parliament on Saturday, members of the Wolesi Jirga lashed out at the government and accused security sectors of failing to manage the system and defend the country and the lives of the people.

MP’s claimed Afghanistan had become a “slaughter-house” with innocent civilians falling victim to attacks.

Heads of the different security ministries were summoned to appear before the special parliamentary session on Saturday in order to answer questions around the deteriorating security situation in the country and about recent large-scale attacks on Kabul city.

MPs were however angry about the no show of First Vice President Amrullah Saleh and National Security Advisor Hamdullah Mohib.

Saleh was appointed last month to take control of the deteriorating security situation in Kabul. Ghani ordered him to ensure attacks, assassinations and crime-related incidents were stamped out.

However, since his appointment dozens of IED explosions have happened in the city and two major attacks were carried out on two separate educational facilities – resulting in the deaths of at least 50 civilians – most of whom were students.

MPs meanwhile accused Saleh and Mohib of having adjusted the authority of officials at some security institutions and claim this “has weakened the functioning of the security sectors”.

The two senior government officials meanwhile said in a letter to parliament that they would only attend a hearing, not an interrogation.

MPs this week summoned Saleh and Mohib along with the acting ministers of defense and interior and the acting head of the National Directorate of Security (NDS).

“We have nothing to do with these ministers because Hamdullah Mohib grabs all the competencies and he should come and respond to the people and he has been busy making appointments, now who is responsible for this unfortunate situation?” asked Ziauddin Zia, a member of the Internal Security Commission of the House of Representatives.

“We have no security, no job, no hope for life, no government, and the president is hiding in the palace and releasing false statements. He made the country a slaughterhouse for the people. Ghani shame on you,” said Habibur Rahman Pedram, a parliament member.

“The absence of Saleh and Mohib is an insult to the people of Afghanistan and Mohib who considers himself the secretary of the president, why is he making appointments? There is a serious need for reforms in the security council,” said Abdul Satar Hussaini, another member of Parliament.

Meanwhile, acting defense minister Assadullah Khalid called the ineligibility of security officials by members of parliament an insult and called for a session of parliament to be held behind closed doors.

“Insulting is not right and the session should be secret so that we can share our words with you [MPS],” said Khalid.

Eventually, the House of Representatives decided by a majority of votes to hold a closed-door session, but a number of members of parliament said that even during this session, security officials had nothing concrete to say about the recent attacks, especially those in capital Kabul.