ZARANJ, Afghanistan -- Maj. Gen. John A. Toolan, commanding general of Regional Command Southwest, visited the city of Zaranj to participate in the ribbon cutting at the opening ceremony of Zaranj’s new hospital emergency room, June 4.
Before the ceremony, a shura was held at the provincial governor’s office. Many government officials were in attendance, including members of the Nimroz Department of Security and senior officials from Nimroz security forces. Toolan was accompanied by U.K. Col. Andrew C. McCord, deputy of Afghan national security forces Development for RC(SW), and Col. Michael A. Lawrence, the Nimroz provincial coordinator, to help promote relations between the provincial and national government.
Toolan, a native of Brooklyn, N.Y., felt it was good to meet with the Nimroz provincial governor, Abdul Karim Brahawi, considering his office is around 150 miles away from Camp Leatherneck.
“Sometimes he feels like he’s out of sight, out of mind, so it’s important to have that kind of interaction,” Toolan said. “It’s the reason why we spent so many hours there just working with him and assuring him that we are going to be there for him.”
Once the meeting was over, Brahawi and Toolan walked through the streets of Zaranj to the new emergency room. After the ribbon-cutting ceremony was over, Toolan toured the facility and asked health department officials about its capabilities.
“You can see the doctors that were there were ecstatic about being able to have that triage center,” Toolan said. “The more we can do like that, the better. Of course the key is for the ministries of health to be able to work through the government to produce those kinds of facilities rather than us build it outright.”