Posts Tagged Karzai

Industry Talk: The APPF On Collecting Revenue

So here are the latest numbers from the APPF, straight from their press releases. I wanted to put this out there as to what these guys are actually making and how much of a government racket this is.
For 2013, they made 5.5 Billion Afghani or in US dollars, that is 98.8 Million! Where that money will go is anyone’s guess. I am sure some will go to pay salaries and what not, but most will probably go into Karzai’s pockets.
Now get this, for 2014 they are already pulling in some serious cash from all the contracts that companies are required to sign with the APPF if they want security. Here is the quote from the press release site.

Press: what is the economical level of this directorate and how effective is it in economical growth of Afghanistan?

Tabish: since beginning of the year 1392 we have received more than 3 billion and hundred and two million Afghani revenue and spent one billion and seven hundred twenty four million Afghani in admin expenditures and delivered one billion three hundred seventy eight million Afghani to government account.

Yep, and yet the APPF has no competition when it comes to performing security. So they can do whatever they want, and there will be no one else that companies can turn to for providing services. So what can go wrong in this kind of set up? How about people getting killed because of poor services rendered? With that said, I invite companies and contractors to share what their thoughts are on the APPF.  –Matt

 

 

5.5 Billion Afghani revenue of current year
30 December 2013
The Afghan public protection force and security enterprise is profit security organization; it is a pay-for-service Afghan government security service provider underneath the Ministry of Interior that protects people, infrastructure, facilities, construction projects and convoys from these activities brings enormous benefit to state treasury.
In order to understand APPF’s gain and revenue generated this year we have prepared an interview with Hashmatullah Latifi business and finance general director of APPF and draw your attention to it.
Q: First brief us information about personnel and activities of business and finance directorate?
A: business and finance directorate works beneath APPF and has three separated departments in its formations, including finance and accounting, logistics and business departments, these departments perform their affairs in various sectors to prevail for example department of business and accounting plans the budget, revenue and expenses and issue personnel salaries, department of logistics provides APPF’s logistical needs and department of business works in contracts related affair with national and international clients.

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Funny Stuff: Karzai Fears Congressman Rohrabacher!!

I love it and I was laughing through this whole clip. How could Congressman Rohrabacher’s visit to Afghanistan possibly create a crisis that would be worse than the Koran burning or any of the other mini-crisis? lol Well, I have some clues….hee hee

Obviously, this guy has touched a nerve with Karzai (or the ‘corrupt prima donna’–lol!) , and I suspect it was his intent to visit the new Northern Alliance or National Front of Afghanistan coalition or that he even supports this new crew. Karzai knows they are a threat politically, and that is awesome.

Also, this congressman mentioned how stupid the Afghan political system is. Here is a quote from the Congressman last January:

“The overly centralized government power structure in Afghanistan is contrary to that country’s culture and has inhibited progress toward building a stable and democratic society there.”

Congressman Rohrabacher gets a medal for this one. What he is saying in this video also coincides with what I was talking about in this post about our pact with Afghanistan. Check it out and hopefully he get’s over there and get’s to do his job….. and makes Karzai sweat! lol –Matt

 

 

Rep. Rohrabacher Leads Bipartisan Delegation’s Afghanistan Strategy Session With National Front Leaders in Berlin
Calls Any Taliban Inclusion in Coalition Government A “Betrayal”
Berlin, Germany, Jan 9, 2012

Today, Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA), led a bipartisan Congressional delegation strategy session with leaders of Afghanistan’s newly formed National Front, to discuss alternatives to Hamid Karazi’s consideration of including the Taliban in Afghanistan’s coalition government. Reps. Louie Gohmert (R-TX), Steve King (R-IA), Loretta Sanchez (D-CA) and several leaders of Afghanistan’s National Front joined Rep. Rohrabacher in Berlin.
“The Afghans and Members of Congress meeting in Berlin today have concluded that there is a serious concern the blood and treasure invested in Afghanistan over this last decade may well have been in vain,” said Rohrabacher. “The overly centralized government power structure in Afghanistan is contrary to that country’s culture and has inhibited progress toward building a stable and democratic society there. Read the rest of this entry »

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Afghanistan: Private Security Transition To The APPF Looking Messy…. And Dangerous

Companies have long hired private guards precisely because they don’t trust the Afghan police to protect them in a crisis. The United Nations used Afghan police to guard its staff housing until an 2009 attack on a residential hotel in which Taliban assailants quickly made it past police guards and killed five U.N. staffers. The U.N. has since increased its security to include foreign guards.
Afghans working with APPF have gone so far as to urge the business licensing agency to “stop stalling the process,” according to a letter sent to U.S. government officials by a development company and obtained by the AP.

I posted two relevant stories below about Afghanistan and contractors. The first is this joke of a plan about replacing all PSC’s with the government force called the APPF.  Although according to the article below, it doesn’t look like it will happen on time, that the forces are not being properly trained and prepared, that the various clients they serve will have very little to say about the quality or conduct, and the best part, it will be more expensive. So some deal this APPF will be for those clients in Afghanistan that have to use them. lol

And as budgets for aid projects are decreasing, the APPF program is likely to increase security costs substantially.
An APPF guard will cost at least $770 a month, according to an AP analysis of official government figures, while private security providers contacted for this story say they usually charge $510-$630 a month per guard.
To avoid pay cuts for guards, individual companies will have to supplement salaries. And any costs for RMC managers will be on top of this. Once these expenses are figured in, security costs could easily double under the APPF.

The second article below is about all of the incidents over the years of Afghan troops, police or PSC’s that were either mentally insane or the enemy, and killed their western partners. The quote up top is from the first article, and the proof of how many incidents is in the second article.

Supposedly friendly Afghan security forces have attacked U.S. and coalition troops 45 times since May 2007, U.S. officials say, for the first time laying out details and analysis of attacks that have killed 70 and wounded 110.

Oh yeah, that is an assuring statistic. And this second article really didn’t get into all the attacks against contractors, but hey, I guess we don’t count?

All I know is that the APPF is going to be one hell of a money making machine for Karzai, and one hell of a headache for those clients being forced to use them. –Matt

 

Afghan private security handover looking messy
By HEIDI VOGT
February 10, 2012
The push by Afghanistan’s president to nationalize legions of private security guards before the end of March is encouraging corruption and jeopardizing multibillion-dollar aid projects, according to companies trying to make the switch.
President Hamid Karzai has railed for years against the large number of guns-for-hire in Afghanistan, saying private security companies skirt the law and risk becoming militias. He ordered them abolished in 2009 and eventually set March 20 of this year as the deadline for everyone except NATO and diplomatic missions to switch to government-provided security.
Afghan officials are rushing to meet the cutoff with the help of NATO advisers. But with fewer than six weeks to go, it’s likely that many components will still be missing on March 20. And even once everything falls into place, higher costs and issues of authority over the government guards will remain.
The change imperils billions of dollars of aid flowing into Afghanistan, particularly from the United States. In a country beset by insurgent attacks and suicide bombings, the private development companies that implement most of the U.S. aid agency’s programs employ private guards to protect compounds, serve as armed escorts and guard construction sites.
On March 21, approximately 11,000 guards now working for private security firms will become government employees as members of the Afghan Public Protection Force, or APPF. They will still be working in the same place with the same job. Except now they’ll answer to the Interior Ministry.
“We don’t want to have security gaps. This is really important to our customers and to us,” said the head of the APPF, Deputy Minister Jamal Abdul Naser Sidiqi. It will happen, he says, because the presidential order says it has to.

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Afghanistan: GardaWorld Is The Latest Victim Of A Corrupt Afghan Government

This is ridiculous. The Afghan government is out of control on this stuff. Look, there is a reason why a private security company is armed with AK 47’s in Afghanistan. Because there is a war going on. So in my view, contractors transporting weapons in the back of their car is not at all abnormal, and nor should it be construed as illegal. Especially if there was a valid explanation for them having the weapons in there in the first place. Here is the quote from the company:

GardaWorld, in a statement, said that it did not yet own the weapons and that its guards were taking them to a rifle range for testing. “The weapons in question were being taken to be tested at a firing range before being purchased and properly licensed by GardaWorld,” the company said, adding that in its discussions with the government it hoped to clear up what it implied was a misunderstanding and “rectify the situation as soon as possible.”

To test these weapons is perfectly understandable, seeing how functional weapons for a security operation is pretty damn important. Now maybe if Afghanistan actually had weapons vendor laws where the dealer actually had to be licensed and all of his weapons must be licensed with Afghanistan, then maybe these kinds of incidents would not happen?

The other thing about this is that this company was operating off of the latest set of rules and laws, or the last agreements and contracts signed. According to GardaWorld, that is what they are dealing with right now. Here is the quote:

The company said it had complied with all Afghan laws and regulations in its operations in the country, where it provides mobile escort guard services and protection for compounds and bases. It would not specify which compounds or bases it protected.
The Interior Ministry said that the company had contracts to work in Kabul, Herat, Kandahar and two other cities, and that GardaWorld was one of 46 security companies licensed to operate in Afghanistan until March 2012.

Also, GardaWorld is a Canadian company. Canada has certainly contributed much to this war, and they expended blood and treasure for the sake of Afghanistan. And this is how Afghanistan treats a Canadian company?  Boy, if I was a businessman in Canada, I don’t think I would want to do business in an environment like that. The Canadian government should be furious that one of their companies is getting this kind of treatment.

I guess that is my point here. If Afghanistan is willing to do this to these businesses called PSC’s, then it is not a stretch to imagine Karzai and company doing the same to other businesses. In that kind of environment, I don’t know why anyone would want to put up with that. I guess if that is what Karzai wants, then that is what he will get. –Matt

 

Afghanistan Closes Firm Providing Security
By GRAHAM BOWLEY
January 5, 2012
The Afghan government said Thursday that it was shutting down the operations of one of the largest foreign security companies operating in the country after detaining two of its contractors on suspicion of gun smuggling.
After months of growing tension between the government and foreign security contractors, the decision marks a sharp escalation into public action by the Afghan authorities.
President Hamid Karzai is in the midst of replacing foreign security contractors with Afghan guards.
The Interior Ministry said it was immediately withdrawing the company’s license, although the company, GardaWorld, a private Canadian security outfit, said it was in discussions with the government and hoped to be able to continue to operate.
The Interior Ministry said that the contractors, two Britons, who were detained on Tuesday after being found with an arsenal of unlicensed AK-47 assault rifles in their sport utility vehicle, were among the 341 Afghan guards and 35 foreign contractors employed by GardaWorld in Afghanistan.

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Industry Talk: Afghanistan’s Karzai Extends Private Security Closure Deadline

Boy, isn’t this a crack up? This was such big news within the industry when it first came out. But it looks like reality has hit and it is just not feasible for them to put together this ‘replacement force’ in time. Well….. I guess we will revisit this deadline in September of 2013. –Matt

 

Afghanistan’s Karzai extends private security closure deadline
11 Dec 2011
By Mirwais Harooni
Afghan President Hamid Karzai scrapped on Sunday a March 2012 deadline he had set for the closure of private security firms, giving them until September 2013 to operate in the country.
Karzai, a frequent critic of private security companies, has previously set dates for the cessation of their work in Afghanistan, but each time the deadline has been extended.
He did not say why he was giving the firms an extra 18 months, but the second half of this year has seen some of the bloodiest attacks on civilians and soldiers in the past decade.
“We give permission for them (to carry on working) for one and a half years more, and one and a half years later (in September 2013) our minister … will close them all,” Karzai said.
Karzai, speaking at an anti-corruption event in the capital Kabul, said the prevalence of security contractors weakened the state by providing many of the services that the public sector otherwise would.
“Another reason why the Afghan government is not able to tackle corruption is a parallel administration to the Afghan government,” he said.

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Quotes: Pratap Chatterjee On The Number Of Contractors Needed For Afghanistan During Drawdown

I just found this and thought I would share.  The two quotes in the article were the ones I thought were the most interesting, and if you would like to read the whole thing, by all means follow the link below.

What is cool here is Pratap has estimated a ratio of contractors to troops for this drawdown, based on the surges in Afghanistan and Iraq, and the drawdown in Iraq.  Or basically the numbers needed for the buildup or drawdown of a conflict. It would be interesting to see how well these figures hold up after all is said and done? Either way, I thought the numbers were pretty impressive.

In the article, he also mentioned how much private security has grown in Afghanistan, and I have talked about that in the past as well. He has predicted, and I agree, that DoS will have a pretty sizable requirement for security contractors there, much like for Iraq.

The other quote that I put up that was interesting, was the possible factors that could impact these numbers. That Karzai could implement the ban on private security companies under Decree 62, and install his own police force wherever. Or there could be a dramatic decrease in reconstruction.

The reconstruction stuff I do not see, because folks want a return on investment for projects they have already invested millions into.  If not, what a waste of money? Better to finish the project and then leave.

As to Karzai banning private security companies?  Well, as Pratap brought up, I think the latest attack at the Intercontinental Hotel in Kabul should change that mindset. I mean Karzai is responsible for shutting down and limiting PSC’s already. According to my readership, the MOI is sitting on approximately 45 licenses that have yet to be issued to companies so they can do their job.

So let’s think about that?  That is 45 companies that are wanting to provide security in a country where the enemy is purposely targeting civilians, and the MOI is just sitting on these licenses? The enemy is attacking hotels, supermarkets, hospitals, reconstruction sites, etc., and yet these private security assets are just wasting away….  I say let these private companies contract with private security, and let the Afghan police and military fight crime and wars. –Matt

…Using a range of 1.3 to 1.4 (based on what Afghanistan needed before the surge and Iraq needed after the drawdown), I would project that if the Obama administration draws down to 68,000 troops in Afghanistan by September 2012, they will need 88,400 contractors at the very least, but potentially as many as 95,880.

….But the one group that has seen demand explode since Obama became president is the number of private security contractors (men or women with guns), which spiked from a flat line of about 4,000 to almost 19,000 today. Given the attack on the Intercontinental in Kabul yesterday, that number seems very unlikely to drop.To be sure, there are two reasons that might change — a dramatic slowdown in reconstruction activity or if President Karzai decides to disband the private security contractors in the country as he has threatened to do in the past. –Pratap Chatterjee.

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