Sunday, May 8, 2011

Stop aid to Pakistan flood victims, says Republican legislator

Why they hate us, volume 3,547. A Texas legislator is little shaky on the concept of "aid," from Indian Express: A powerful Republican Congresswoman has asked Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to immediately stop American aid program for flood victims in Pakistan, where al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden was killed by US special forces on Monday.

Expressing her "concerns during this time of immense uncertainty about our country's relationship with Pakistan", Congresswoman Kay Granger, who chairs a key committee with oversight over foreign assistance, urged Clinton to shelve nearly USD 200 million in cash payments to Pakistan agencies.

"My opposition to the program has only been heightened by the discovery of the most notorious terrorist in the world living hundreds of yards from a Pakistani military installation for more than five years. This reinforces my greater concern that the government may be incapable of distributing US funds in a transparent manner that allows proper oversight of taxpayer dollars," she said in a letter.

Over the last year, she said she had raised concerns about this approach in numerous hearings, briefings, and meetings with Administration officials. "The Appropriations Committee received two letters in the last week notifying us that the Administration is moving ahead with cash payments to the Pakistan government. Of these, I remain most troubled by the decision to provide USD 190 million of US assistance for flood victims through the Pakistan Citizens' Damages Compensation Fund," she said.

"I have opposed the CDCF since I was told about it last fall. The American taxpayer would be appalled to know that the United States is going to provide cash to the Pakistani Government to distribute debit cards to its citizens to rebuild their homes," she said…

A Texas road sign, shot by A. Ward, Wikimedia Commons, under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license

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