As Afghan government has not been able to deliver well, the concerns of the people and their skepticism about the future of the country seem to be on the rise. They have lost their confidence on the government and do not expect much from it. It has also given rise to a sense of indifference on the part of the people to do good for the society as a whole. Finding the responsible individuals doing nothing worthwhile, the poor and deprived people seem reluctant to do what they could possibly do on their own for improvements in the country. As a matter of fact, the leading individuals have not been able to set any exemplary guideline for others to follow. They have been involved in pursuing their own self-centered objectives.
To support these claims, a survey conducted by Center for Strategic and Regional Studies (CSRS) shows that majority of the people in Afghanistan are skeptical about National Unity Government’s (NUG) policies on economy, security and corruption. The poll shows that almost 90 percent of Afghans have said that they believe government is facing serious challenges. This skepticism and opinion that the people have developed regarding the performance of the government is not because of their political differences with the government; rather most of it has to do with the incapacity of the government to do something worthwhile in sectors like economy, security and corruption.
Since the withdrawal of international forces from Afghanistan and decrease in the international support for country’s economic challenges, the government should have concentrated properly towards improving the country’s economic system and making efforts to make Afghanistan self-sufficient, at least, in certain factors, but the government has not been able to do so. Even today, Afghanistan stands dependent on international support for most of its expenditures as the businesses have not been able to flourish as much as they should have; and the people are very well aware of all these facts. The polls show that 80 percent of respondents said that economic development in the country has deteriorated during the present government compared to the previous administration, while 89 percent of the respondents said government failed to create jobs for Afghans while 71 percent raised doubts over government’s economic strategy.
As far as security is concerned, there is nothing hidden from the people as they are the ones who mostly suffer from the consequences of lingering and, in certain cases, increasing insecurity. They are the ones who die and get injured when the insurgents attack them directly or indirectly. Therefore, they do not seem satisfied with what is being done to control the growing insecurity in the country. On the basis of the poll, the majority of Afghans have become increasingly more skeptical about peace efforts. The report indicates that the High Peace Council (HPC) has failed to make a breakthrough in peace talks with insurgents and no tangible outcomes have been achieved. “The lack of harmony between members of the peace council is the main reason of their failure for peace,” said CSRS member Ahmad Bilal Khalil. On security, 58 percent of respondents said that security is likely to further deteriorate in the country.
Same is the case with the efforts regarding corruption. NUG made some huge promises during its initial days and there were expectations that something would ultimately happen but the government took no time in forgetting those promises. And, it is the reason that corruption is still one of the main issues in Afghanistan and it is also hampering the progress in other sectors. For example, one of the reasons that the country has not been able to achieve something worthwhile in the field of security and economic development is corruption. And, the common people have to suffer the consequences to a great extent. The CSRS poll shows that distrust among Afghans continues over the government’s anti-graft strategy. The report states that almost 70 percent of Afghans have said government is not firmly committed to fighting corruption in the country. It is really difficult to make any achievement in any sector as long as there is prevailing corruption there. Before making efforts to improve different sectors, the first step should be discouraging corruption in every possible manner; otherwise, nothing would be achieved.
NUG requires doing an immense amount of work if it wants to restore its image and its legitimacy. Providing services and the basic requirements to the people is the most important factor in enabling the government do so. If it does not have enough resources, at least, it can show through its willingness and resolve that is really serious in solving the problems of the people. As the CSRS polls say, “A lack of commitment within the government’s political leadership, weakness of the legal and judicial institutions and influence of powerful elements within government institutions are among the main issues which have undermined efforts to address the challenges.”