Chairwoman Lowey, Ranking Member Granger and distinguished panel members, thank you for the opportunity to testify before you this morning on the United States Agency for International Development's (USAID) activities in Afghanistan. I want to focus my testimony on our civilian efforts related to oversight and accountability of U.S. taxpayer resources in the promotion of good governance in Afghanistan.
Chairman Faleomavaega, Ranking Member Manzullo, and members of the Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific and the Global Environment, on behalf of Administrator Shah and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), thank you for the opportunity to testify on this important and timely topic. I appreciate the leadership on this issue demonstrated by Under Secretary Brainard of the Department of Treasury and Deputy Special Envoy Pershing of the Department of State.
Co-Chair Shays, Co-Chair Thibault, and Commissioners, I thank you for the invitation to join you and my fellow colleagues on this panel today. I am pleased to represent the U.S. Agency for International Development as we explore the question posed by this commission regarding oversight of subcontracts in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Good morning, Chairman Payne, Ranking Member Smith, and members of the Subcommittee. I appreciate the opportunity to appear before you today to discuss current conditions in the Great Lakes region and USAID's contributions to sustainable development in those countries.
For five years, we have discussed the roadmap of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) and what we are doing to support its milestones. Now that discussion is changing. In eight months, millions of Sudanese will decide their future as a nation. Next year, our current roadmap will end, and our path ahead could go in many different directions.
Mr. Chairman, Members of the Commission, it is an honor and a privilege to present this testimony to the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission. I welcome the opportunity to outline how the United States Agency for International Development is helping to address the challenges faced by indigenous peoples in Colombia, Panama, and Peru and throughout Latin America.
As your leadership has highlighted, food security is one of the highest priorities for U.S. development assistance. Food security ranks as a high development priority not simply because the United States is determined to meet our moral obligation as a great nation. The food security of developing nations is integral to our national security--hunger and poverty perpetuate instability, and food shortages are acutely destabilizing. Developing bodies and developing economies both need steady sustenance to thrive. Food security facilitates stable lives and sturdy, resilient nations. Our comprehensive approach seeks to respond to the staggering scope of the food security problem, a problem that has expanded in size in the past few years, affecting the lives of more than 1.1 billion people who suffer daily from want of this most basic of human need.
I know this is a time of great economic strain for so many Americans. For every dollar we invest, we must show results. That is why this budget supports programs vital to our national interests. The United States must be able to exercise global leadership to respond to crosscurrents of a complex world. This requires the effective use of all instruments of our national security - including development. We agree strongly with President Obama and Secretary Clinton's vision of embracing development as indispensable to American foreign policy and national security. It is through this relentless dedication to results that we do justice to our motto, 'from the American people.' We do this not just by extending a helping hand, but by sharing the hopefulness of the American dream in places where hope remains shrouded by poverty, oppression and despair. In many cases, the balance between a future filled with fear and a future filled with hope is fragile. Every day, USAID tips the scale toward hope and opportunity.
Good morning, Chairman Payne, Ranking Member Smith, and members of the Subcommittee. Thank you for the opportunity to testify before you today.
Last updated: December 13, 2013