New mining law yet to be published

KABUL (Pajhwok): The new mining law was endorsed by former president Hamid Karzai about three months ago, but the Ministry of Justice (MJ) is yet to publish it in the official gazette.

The draft law was first tabled in the parliament on Aug 9 and later approved and sent to the then president for signing.

The Ministry of Mines and Petroleum (MoMP) has welcomed singing into law the bill by the former president, saying the new law would help attract investment. 

Some experts say the delay in the law’s publication kept the people uninformed.

Mohammad Jafar Kohistan, a political expert, said once a law got approved by the president, it should be published in the government gazette without any delay.

He said the publication was a legal necessity and important for the people concerned in order to have sufficient information about the newly approved measure.

According to Kohistani, a deliberate delay in publication of an approved law was a serious crime. He said individuals responsible for the unnecessary delay should be punished in accordance with the criminal law.

Meanwhile, an official at the Ministry of Justice said the publication had been delayed due to some difficulties in translation of the law into Pashto, Dari and English languages.

Abdul Rahim Daqiq, the publication in-charge at the ministry, said technical issues in the law would be resolved in 15 days and the law would be ready for publication.

Earlier, the Mines Ministry had rejected the existence of any technical difficulties in translation of the act.

Javed Noorani, a mining expert, said publication of the new mining law had been delayed due to recent amendments to some articles of the law.

He said the law was first brought to parliament in 2012 and the first man who opposed the bill was incumbent president Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai.

Noorani alleged one reason behind the delayed publication could be President Ghani’s opposition to it.

However, some experts suggest further amendments to the law if some clauses are in conflict with the country’s interest. They stressed prompt publication of the law.

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