Do you have nepotism in your country?

Elections in the shadow of corruption and nepotism

The academy is located deep in the Westerwald. About 50 young women and men stand in a circle on a meadow. The students enthusiastically imitate the steps taken by the Afghan guests from Kabul, Herat and Khost. Traditional Afghan music is booming from the overdriven boom box. The traditional round dance Attan is the symbol of unity in the multi-ethnic state of Afghanistan.

"We wanted to deal with development work. We quickly came across Afghanistan. When you think of the country, you think more of terror, war, destruction and less of development, and we thought there is definitely a more differentiated picture of what we can and do draw should. And I think we're doing quite well at this academy. "

Communication manager Christina Zech and European scientist Luise Heidenreich organized the Afghanistan week in Altenkirchen.

"And we are visited by 13 Afghan lecturers who are currently receiving further training in their subject in Bochum, in other words in economics. They are here right now and we are very pleased that the scholarship holders can thus establish such close contact with them."

There are polls that show that over 50 percent of Afghans now believe that the current government is worse than any government in the past 20 years, including the Taliban. Amir, a lecturer at the Faculty of Economics at Herat University near the Iranian border, sees the work of the Karzai government in a more positive light.

"The economic situation here in Herat is better than in the other Afghan cities. This also applies to the equipment at the universities. It has also improved."

In the strategic proposals of the international donor countries, however, little is heard about how the Afghan education system can be improved and the economy stimulated. Better training of teachers and university lecturers is an important step in creating alternatives to the opium business, for example, which gives bread to many people - especially in rural areas.

"Well, she said the reputation comes mainly from the fact that they are so badly paid. That really means that nobody wants to become a teacher. Even if there are teachers. Most of them are just poorly trained."

The people of Afghanistan have heard of the billions that have gone into rebuilding the country. But they don't see this money getting through to them.

"But there is progress at our universities. The students want to get information. They not only want to read books, but also use the Internet. There is a lot of discussion. Together with the professors. Also about the international economic and financial crisis. They want theirs develop your own point of view.

But the teaching aids at Afghan universities are very, very poor. The essentials are missing. Books, current data and information. Most of the material is only available in English. Many do not speak English or speak poorly. So we have to go back to books from Iran. They are not up to date either. We urgently need more computers and Internet access in Kabul and at the other universities in the country. "

Homeira is a lecturer in Kabul. The young economist speaks of the large number of students in her seminars. Since there is no functioning publishing system in Afghanistan, scientists and authors print their books themselves and distribute them.

"The state has books printed. But with catastrophic spelling and grammatical errors. It goes like this every year. And then they say. Sorry. The books are unusable. We are printing new ones. An enormous waste of money. The Ministry of Education's budget is also disappearing in completely different channels. "

The liaison professor for the Afghan guests is Professor Wilhelm Löwenstein. In cooperation with Kabul, Herat and Mazar-e Sharif, the director of the Institute for Development Policy at the Ruhr University Bochum has developed a new Bachelor curriculum in economics. In addition, almost 4,000 pages of English-language texts were translated into Dari and made available to the Afghan partners.

"The level of education in Afghanistan is really miserable compared to many developing countries. And this miserable level of education is responsible in many ways for the deficits we are observing today. It is responsible for the fact that corruption is widespread today, that human rights violations take place. We need just time. "