Joined by government and local leaders, the Nangarhar Provincial Reconstruction Team celebrated the completion of a Grand Canal repair project, April 12, during a ribbon cutting ceremony in Jalalabad, Afghanistan.
Nangarhar Provincial Governor, Gul Agha Sherzai, and PRT commander, Air Force Lt. Col. Steven Cabosky from Newton Falls, Ohio, along with other government and tribal officials, spoke to the crowd about the benefits the repaired canal will provide to the province’s agriculture economy.
“This project represents hope for the people of Afghanistan,” said Cabosky. “It was identified by the government as one of the most important needs of the province and was a coordinated effort between the government and PRT. Afghans will enjoy the fruits of this project for years to come.”
The repairs took approximately nine months to complete and cost $2.8 million, covering 63 kilometers of canal spanning four districts. The contractor repaired 850 gates and installed five new siphons, which will help control the flow of water through the canal and double the irrigation capability.
“The canal repairs provide better irrigation, more crops, more jobs and a better economy for the Nangarhar people,” Cabosky said. “While the enemies of Afghanistan offer only destruction and death, this project demonstrates the government’s commitment to building a better future for the children of Afghanistan.”
The project will directly benefit more than 60,000 families, Governor Sherzai said at the ceremony.
“Reconstruction in Nangarhar is successful because we have the support of the people,” the governor said. “The Grand Canal was one of our biggest projects and it was repaired through the help of our coalition friends. It’s a very important project and today is a great day for all Nangarhar people.”
Story by Capt. Dustin Hart