Ashraf Ghani sworn in as President
Dr. Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai has been sworn in as the new President of Afghanistan with Dr. Abdullah Abdullah taking the oath as the new Chief Executive Officer.
The First and Second Vice-Presidents, General Abdul Rashid Dostum and Sarwar Danish were also sworn-in during the ceremony.
Ashraf Ghani (65) took his first degree at the American University in Beirut and returned to Afghanistan in 1977 to teach anthropology at Kabul University. He went on to take a Master’s in anthropology at Columbia University, USA.
Having had a distinguished academic career he went on to join the World Bank in 1991 where he took on assignments in East and South Asia. Returning to Afghanistan he was Minister of Finance under President Hamid Karzai from 2002 – 2004. But after a falling out between the two men Ghani returned to academia as Chancellor of Kabul University. He went on to fight the 2009 Presidential election but lost and came back to try again in 2014.
It took months of arguments and vote tallying before he was announced President last week, but only when his opponent in the second round, Dr. Abdullah Abdullah, was give the CEO role, effectively Prime Minister.
Dr Ghani has been critical of the way in which international aid has been wasted in Afghanistan and has promised to alleviate poverty as a priority. He is married with two children and is renowned for having a quick temper.