U.S. Navy Cmdr. Thomas Sheppard, commanding officer of Provincial Reconstruction Team Farah, Nancy Abella, U.S. State Department representative, and Farah Provincial Governor Mohammed Akram Khpalwak welcomed Ghani and U.K. Brig. Gen. Richard Cripwell, Head of Transition at International Security Assistance Force Headquarters, to Forward Operating Base Farah.
“Today’s visit to Farah is part of a series of visits that Dr. Ashraf Ghani, who is head of the transition committee for the Afghan government, makes around the provinces to satisfy himself that districts, and perhaps the province itself, is ready to enter the process of transition,” said Cripwell. “It was an extremely successful visit. Dr Ghani takes these visits very seriously and the Governor did as well.”
“Dr. Ghani was on a transition consultation visit, where he is taking input from the whole gamut of society in the province to better make decisions on transition, and he’s also educating them on what transition really means,” said Abella. “He had a pretty positive, but also stern message about how Afghans need to take responsibility for themselves through transition. He was communicating Kabul’s message, but he was also gathering a lot of information to better inform their decisions.”
“In Afghanistanas a whole, we are now looking to finalize what will be included in tranche three of transition, and that decision will hopefully go to the President in the next week or so,” said Cripwell. “It’s a very important time for Farah, and the people of Farah, and indeed for the country. We are hoping very much that a number of districts in Farah will be included in the tranche and that the ANSF will assume the lead authority for security in the region, and I have no doubt that they are ready to take on that responsibility.”
The PRT’s mission is to support economic development and effective governance at the district, municipal, and provincial level inFarahProvincein order to enhance the legitimate exercise of Government of Islamic Republic of Afghanistan authority and its ability to provide basic services to the people of Farah.
“It was a good experience for the people of Farah to be able to voice their concerns to higher levels of government,” said Sheppard.
NTM-A is a coalition of 38 troop-contributing nations charged with assisting the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan in generating a capable and sustainable Afghan National Security Force ready to take lead of their country’s security by 2014. For more information about NTM-A, visit www.ntm-a.com.