Afghan government announce increase in police force salaries
KABUL November 29, 2009 (AfghanNews) – The Afghan government announced increase in salaries of the Afghan National Police saying it will help police force too have batter life.
Hanif Atmar, the Afghan Interior Minister Mohammad has said that police salaries would be increased by between 33 and 67 per cent.
Speaking in press conference, Mr. Atmar said, “The Afghan police salaries will increase from $180 to $240 in high-threat provinces, registering a 33 per cent rise.”
According to Interior Minister, in lower risk areas, the salaries will increase up to $200 per month. At the moment Afghan police receive $120.
Afghan Interior Minister said that the United States will pay the first year's increases cost $70 million.
“The following year, 14 other donor countries will cover the cost,” said the minister, however, he did not specify which countries were contributing.
According to figures provide by the Afghan security officials, police force suffers much higher casualty rates than Afghan army but they complain that they are underpaid and under-equipped.
Afghan Interior minister said that they are trying hard to improve police force by providing training and added that the International community promised to help Afghanistan in this regard.
At the same time many Afghans say that police force is widely considered among the most corrupt department in Afghanistan at the moment but police say that low salaries contributing to this problem.
A university graduates police officer with condition of anonymity, accepted that corruption was common among the police force his colleagues and said , “The low salaries we are getting is the major cause of corruption among the police.”
“With the increase in salaries, we will receive around $200 but I pay $150 only house rent, keeping in view this situation, it is impossible for me to survive with $50 with a seven member family,” he complained.
Answering to a question about providing of training to police forces, he said, “The training has nothing to do with fight against corruption among the police, both trained and untrained police are need to survive and they need money for survival.”
Keeping in view this reality, Afghan analysts also say till giving good pay to police force, it is difficult to have a corruption free police force.
Ahmad Zia Ahmadzai, an Afghan analyst who follow ongoing situation in Afghanistan said, “While International community and the Afghan government determined to seriously fight against corruption, it is a must to clean police forces first of all.”
Much has been done to improve the police forces since the fall of the Taliban in 2001 but still we are witness of a corrupt force, therefore, if the government is trying to fights corruption, having a clean police force should be a priority otherwise, I am not optimistic about motto of fight against corruption, Mr. Ahmadzai added.