INTERVIEW WITH ABDUL AHAD WAHID
An interview of the Acting Mayor of Kabul, by Stephane Chevalier during the 10th Silk Road Mayors Forum.
- I’m an architect and I’m the Acting Mayor of Kabul in Afghanistan.My function in the city is architect manager in charged of urbanism, planning master plan, construction and sanitation.
- More than 5,000,000 inhabitants live in Kabul. After the war our city needs to build and create a municipality with several cultures.
Our national politicians try to develop peace in the country. In the city of Kabul, the biggest problem is the economic activity. People need job, they need to work. The municipality cannot find and create jobs for the population. Our policy is to develop different actions like urban cleaning, removal of waste, and « small jobs » in agriculture, construction and artisan activities.
- The city of Kabul is sensitive to the spirit of the Silk Road. Afghanistan is a crossroad between 7 civilizations. When I heard the WCO Forum, we decide to participate to create new links with the Silk Road.
- We like the idea of developing a new Silk Road and we really hope that all the initiatives around the Silk Road can bring new economic opportunities for the participating cities. We really hope that this Silk Road Mayors Forum can develop not just a cultural road, but an economic road as well. Imagine, we can develop it into an e-commerce Silk Road with the internet !
- To realize this dream, we need to educate our people. We need to learn new technology to give a chance to the new civilization.
- In my observation, we are in a global world with an occidental vision and influence. In America and in Europe they educate people to produce. In Afghanistan we have a longer tradition in philosophy and art. We want to educate the younger generation not only to produce but also to know. Knowledge is essential for the human being. We would not know where to go if we lost our tradition or our origin. A civilization can progress if we have dynamic projections to the future, but we also need to preserve our heritage to know where we came from.
- WCO can play a role to many cities. WCO tell us:
« Remember who you are ? Each city on the Silk Road has a personal story with the Silk Road. We must not forget our origin and how we have arrived here today ».