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Life humbles: Former Afghanistan finance minister Khalid Payenda turns into taxi driver for survival in US

WASHINGTON-(MaraviPost)-A 40-year-old former minister of finance in the Republic of Afghanistan, Khalid Payenda, has turned to Uber driving as means of survival in the foreign country months after fleeing his home country.

Payenda resigned as finance minister a week before the Taliban seized Kabul, as his relationship with Ghani deteriorated.

The Fulbright Scholar at University of Illinois who led a $6 billion budget in Afghanistan fled the country as the government was on the point of collapse fearing the president would have him arrested.

Former Afghanistan finance minister Khalid Payenda

He was appointed in January 2021 as the country’s Finance minister before he resigned on August 10, 2021.

According to the Guardian, Payenda has turned to Uber driving as means supporting his family in the foreign country after his departure from Kabul, Afghanistan in 2021.

The father of four reportedly joined Uber driving as one way of eliminating the need for him to be desperate.

He also co-teach a course at Georgetown University and occasionally speaks at think-tanks as he copes with a sense of rootlessness and failure.

He disclosed that he doesn’t have any sense of belonging and described the feeling as empty.

He also revealed that currently he’s earning just over US$150 for six hours of work in the country that promised to help save his homeland.

The Taliban returned to power in Afghanistan in 2021 after waging a twenty-year insurgency following the withdraw of the United States troops from country as outlined in the 2020 peace agreement.

The takeover accelerated the country’s human rights crisis and humanitarian catastrophe. Reports indicated that the regime rolled back women’s rights advances and media freedom.

Secondary schools for girls reportedly remained closed and women have been largely prohibited from working in jobs outside of teaching and health care.

The country seem not to run short of suffering as it still has its assets frozen and it has remained cut off from international aid while awaiting recognition of the Taliban government which replaced the US-supported regime.

Angella Semu
Angella Semu
I hold a Bachelor of science degree in Agriculture Development Communication that I obtained from Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources. I previously worked with The Nation Publications Limited since 2018 before joining The Maravi post particularly on Agriculture Desk as an intern before I became a correspondent. Currently I am reporting for The Maravi Post mainly in International News and locally in the Southern region of Malawi.
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