Clinton bashes Trump over ‘bombastic’ Brexit comments

WASHINGTON: Democrat Hillary Clinton on Sunday took a swipe at Republican rival Donald Trump’s stance on Brexit, saying that “bombastic comments” do more harm than good during such times.

Trump has hailed Britain’s vote to leave the European Union as “fantastic,” telling reporters during a visit to Scotland on Friday that he thinks the Brexit is “a great thing”.

Clinton, who was speaking to the US Conference of Mayors, did not mention Trump by name, but told city leaders that the United States should be governed by those “who put the interest of the American people ahead of their personal business interests”.

Trump was in Scotland for the ceremonial re-opening of his refurbished Trump Turnberry golf course.

America needs leaders “who understand that bombastic comments in turbulent times can actually cause more turbulence”, Clinton said. “And that’s why steady, experienced leadership is so important at times like these.”

Trump, who has relied on populist fervor and anti-immigrant rhetoric in his presidential bid, has said Britain’s anti-EU movement had parallels with his own quest to become the US president.

Clinton acknowledged Sunday that “just as we have seen there are many frustrated people in Britain, we know there are frustrated people here at home too”.

But, she told the mayors who gathered in the midwestern city of Indianapolis, “no one should be confused about America’s commitment to Europe, not an autocrat in the Kremlin, not a presidential candidate on a Scottish golf course”.

New polls released Sunday showed Clinton taking a lead in the presidential race.

According to a Washington Post-ABC News survey, 51 per cent of respondents said they would vote for Clinton, versus 39pc for Trump.

A Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll showed a slimmer lead for Clinton with 46pc to Trump’s 41pc.

250 mini hydropower projects to be functional in KP by end 2016

PESHAWAR: About 250 mini and micro hydropower projects (MHPs) will become fully operational and functional to provide electricity to around 245,000 people in hilly areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa through community-based local institutional mechanisms by the end of 2016.

This was announced by heads of various NGOs/firms working on the construction of MHPs while speaking at a joint press conference at Peshawar Press Club on Sunday. The contractors headed by chief executive officer of Hydrolink Engineering and Equipment Company (pvt) limited Fazal Rabbi included Fatma Welfare Foundation CEO Farhad Khan and Dir Area Development Organisation’s Mohammad Khaliq.

Speaking about his work experience with communities, Mr Rabbi said that people living in the remote localities in Chitral, Dir and Battagram districts had welcomed launching of the MHPs as they did not have power supply since inception of the country. He said that though power supply lines passed through different localities, some villages in these districts were not given electricity for unknown reasons.

Appreciating the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government, Mr Rabbi said that the hydropower projects would help tap the water potential and enable people to get electricity on low cost to increase their income. Besides the people’s dependence o fuel (kerosene) would be reduced and they would be encouraged to protect their forests.

Contractors say over 200,000 people will benefit from the projects

He said that the hydropower projects were useful for the local people as these would provide low cost electricity from Rs2 to Rs4 per unit to the local community.

“We, being the implementer, are confident that by the end of 2016 about 250 MHPs will become fully operational and functional to provide electricity to some 245,000 mountain people through community-based local institutional mechanisms,” he said.

Mr Rabbi said that the NGOs/construction firms were working with the Pakhtunkhwa Energy Development Organisation (Pedo) under close supervision of the Energy and Power (E&P) Department of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa since 2014. He said that the 356 MHPs were purely government-funded community empowerment and participatory projects working successfully.

“We have so far found Pedo’s new management and E&P Department committed to reforming and transforming the organisation into a self-sustainable institution that will not only fulfil the provincial energy demands, but also contribute to the national energy security,” he claimed.

Farhad Khan claimed that Pedo was being run transparently and license was given during two weeks of application and feasibility submitted within six months. He said that progress on 356 MHPs had suffered due to some initial challenges, but now the overall progress and quality of work had no precedent. The projects are regularly monitored by Pedo, E&P Department and provincial monitoring and evaluation directorate.

Published in Dawn, June 27th, 2016