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Volume 455: debated on Thursday 25 January 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs pursuant to the answer of 10 January 2007, Official Report, column 586W, on Afghanistan, what payments have been made personally to Engineer Daud, former Governor of Helmand Province, by the UK Government; and for what purpose. (110653)

The UK has made one payment to former Governor of Helmand Province, Engineer Daud, of US$10,000. These funds were used as part of a quick impact project (QIP) helping to support local government capacity building through a shura (local council) initiative in Musa Qala.

QIPs are delivering sustainable short-term development results in Helmand, helping provide a platform for longer-term development activities throughout the province. The UK has allocated US$9 million this financial year to fund QIPs in the province. Working closely with Afghan authorities, the UK has implemented over 100 projects in Helmand. These include provision of emergency humanitarian assistance to drought victims, reconstruction work on flood defences and major irrigation systems, and the construction of new classrooms for Lashkar Gah's boys’ and girls’ schools.