09 Dec Local Government is Failing to Meet Local Needs
The success or failure of Afghanistan’s 2014 transition will in large part depend on the legitimacy and effectiveness of its government. Local government at the provincial, district and village level is critical in this equation because it is where Afghan citizens interact directly with their state. These experiences are fundamental to building—or undermining—their faith in the current state-building project. Lead AREU researcher Douglas Saltmarshe outlined for the media how, despite a confusing proliferation of local governance initiatives, major obstacles remain for most Afghans to express their needs and for local administrators to respond to them. Drawing on research evidence from 47 districts across the country, he examined some of the successes and failures of local government in the fields of security, justice and service delivery, and outlined recommendations for building a more responsive, legitimate and durable Afghan state.