According to staff at the first vice president’s office, their salaries have not been paid for two months and that the first vice president is being pushed aside.
First VP’s Office Being Sidelined: Dostum Aides Claim
First Vice President Abdul Rashid Dostum’s office Tuesday claimed that government has not paid the salaries of employees for two months and that President Ashraf Ghani has not approved the administrative structure of the office for this fiscal year.
Dostum aides also said the office of the first VP has been sidelined in terms of government affairs.
Abdul Shokor Hashemi, 52, is one employee who has worked at the Sedarat Palace for 30 years. He has worked in government for various regimes and said it is the first time in 30 years that government has not paid his salary.
“The government stopped transport services for us and instead pledged to pay some money. But we have not been paid for two months. They have also not paid car rental fees over the past five months or two months in overtime. It means overall they have not paid us for nine months,” said Hashemi.
Dostum aides pointed out that five months into the new fiscal year, Ghani had also still not approved the structure of the first VP’s office for this year, stating this affected about 200 staff members.
“When we ask them about the issue, they say that it is lying on the table of Mr. President. If a letter remains untouched on the table of the president for three or four months, then you realize what can happen to this country,” said Mohammad Yasin Khamosh, a media advisor to Dostum.
According to Khamosh, reports from the National Security Council (NSC) are also not being sent to the office of the first vice president.
He said that the administrative office of the president is also not responding to letters dispatched to them from the office of the first vice president.
“We are not receiving anything from the national security council. I want to give a stupid example - previously newspapers were delivered here but recently we received a notification from the president’s administrative affairs office stating that we will no longer be supplied with newspapers due to budget constraints,” added Khamosh.
“The presidential palace has said that the recommendations are being processed and the (documents) are lying on the table of the president. But we do not understand why the president cannot deal with them, is it due to work load or is it a deliberate move?” asked Bashir Ahmad Tayyanj, the spokesman for the Dostum-led Junbish Mili party.
In reference to the allegations, the deputy spokesman for the presidential palace Dawa Khan Menapal said the salaries of employees from this office had not been paid due to certain administrative issues.
However, he refused to comment on the claims that Dostum had been sidelined.