US multi-million dollar aid to Pak floundering: NYTMay 2nd, 2011 - 4:33 pm ICT by ANI
Khajuri Kach (Pakistan), May 2 (ANI): A multi-billion-dollar aid plan that the Obama administration hoped would win over Pakistanis and buttress the weak civilian government is foundering because Washington’s fears of Pakistani corruption and incompetence has slowed disbursal of the money.
The aid program promoted by Senator John Kerry, chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, promised Pakistan 7.5 billion dollars over five years, much of it delivered through the civilian government.
In a scathing report, the Government Accountability Office said that only 179.5 million dollars of the first 1.5 billion dollars of the five-year program had been disbursed by last December.
Energy projects that the Obama administration said would improve electricity for households and energy-starved industries have been placed in out-of-the-way areas, and help for the crumbling education system has not materialized.
The United States Agency for International Development’s director for Pakistan, Andrew B. Sisson, defended the pace of spending.
The New York Times quoted him, as saying: “This is a long-term enterprise, and building that takes time, and we’re doing that.
During a visit to Pakistan in October 2009, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton announced that much of the American aid money would be devoted to “seven signature projects.”
Nancy Birdsall, president of the Center for Global Development in Washington, said the overall goals of the aid program were unrealistic.(ANI)
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Tags: aid money, billion dollars, civilian government, education system, energy projects, foreign relations committee, government accountability office, hillary rodham clinton, incompetence, john kerry, khajuri kach, nancy birdsall, new york times, nyt, pakistanis, scathing report, senator john kerry, signature projects, sisson, united states agency