Only one new appointment in Taliban’s cabinet in nine months

There has been only one new appointment within the Taliban’s cabinet over the past nine months, while 36 other appointments involved shifting Taliban authorities from one province or assignment to another, according to data collected by Amu.

This information comes from 11 appointment lists shared by Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid between September 2023 and May 21, 2024.

The report includes 37 Taliban appointments between September 20, 2023, and May 21, 2024. Eight of these appointments involved Taliban officials being shifted to new locations while holding the same positions in the provinces of Baghlan, Takhar, Kunar, Daikundi, Kabul, Nimroz, Laghman, and Nuristan.

Appointments on May 21, 2024:

  • Abdul Haq, the Taliban police commander in Kunar, was reappointed as the police commander in Baghlan.
  • Jan Mohammad Hamza, the police commander in Baghlan, was shifted to Takhar.
  • Zia-ul-Haq, the former police commander in Takhar, was appointed as the police commander in Kunar.

Appointments on November 27, 2023:

  • Mohammad Aman Obaid, the governor of Daikundi, was appointed as the governor of Kabul.
  • Mohammad Qasim Khalid, the governor of Kabul, was appointed the governor of Nimroz.
  • Najibullah Rafi, the governor of Nimroz, was appointed the governor of Daikundi.

In February 2024, the Taliban’s governor of Laghman, Zainul Aabiddin, was appointed as the governor of Nuristan, while Sher Ahmad Haqqani, the governor of Nuristan, was shifted to Laghman.

However, Taliban made only one new appointment of an official during this nine-month period. Mohammad Zahid Jan Agha was appointed as the deputy minister of Labor and Social Affairs. Additionally, 28 officials received promotions compared to their previous posts.

Appointments between September 20 last year and May 21 this year:

  • Three appointments in the Ministry of Finance.
  • Two appointments in the Administrative Office.
  • One appointment in the Ministry of Public Health.
  • Four appointments at the local level in Kandahar.
  • One appointment each in Khost, Logar, Paktika, Farah, Nimroz, Balkh, Paktia, Uruzgan, and Herat provinces.
  • One appointment in the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs.
  • Three appointments at the local level in Helmand province.
  • One appointment in the Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation.
  • One appointment in the special forces command.
  • One appointment in the 205th Corps.
  • One appointment in the Ministry of Tribal Affairs and Borders.
  • One appointment in the leader’s administrative office.

After taking over Afghanistan in August 2021, Taliban formed a cabinet under the leadership of Mohammad Hassan Akhund, who serves as the Prime Minister. The cabinet reports to Akhund as well as to Taliban leader Hibatullah Akhundzada in Kandahar. Despite nearly three years having passed, the Taliban has yet to announce an official cabinet, with all officials holding acting positions.

Former Defense Minister Shah Mahmood Miakhail commented, “The system that the Taliban have established is unprecedented, both in Islamic and non-Islamic countries. It is characterized by anti-women’s education policies, a lack of freedom of expression, and a lack of accountability to the people.”

Taliban continues to follow its own methods in appointing government positions amid high unemployment rates, with thousands of educated youths struggling with economic hardships and lack of job opportunities. “Those who have worked their whole lives and have experience are being dismissed. Young people who have obtained an education should be given job opportunities to help solve economic problems,” said a resident of Kabul.

Another resident expressed frustration, noting that Taliban officials are simply moving from one position to another in a constant rotation. “I don’t know what to say,” he added.

This comes as the Taliban’s deputy chief minister for political affairs, Abdul Kabir, claimed in a meeting with UN Under-Secretary-General for Political and Peacebuilding Affairs Rosemary DiCarlo that Taliban are appointing officials based on their capacities.