Sunday, May 15, 2011

Ahmadinejad Names Caretaker Ministers, Effectively Merges Departments Without Majlis Approval

Iran’s president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad today appointed the ministers of Commerce and Labor as caretaker minsters of the departments of Industries and Mines and Social Welfares respectively. The action in effect merged the four cabinet-level departments into two without the approval of Majlis. He is also expected to name the minster of Energy as caretaker of the department of Oil as well, completing the merger plans.

On Friday, Ahmadinejad met with the Speaker of Majlis Ali Larijani in a meeting chaired by the supreme leader, Ayatollah Khamenei, and agreed to seek parliament’s approval for the merger of the departments and vote of confidence for the new ministers. However, hours after the meeting, Ahmadinejad dismissed ministers of Oil, Industries and Mines, and Social Welfare. In his letter to the dismissed ministers, Ahmadinejad said they had been removed from their duties because their departments were eliminated as result of the mergers. The Majlis leadership, including its deputy speaker, strongly objected to the move, saying the parliament had not received nor approved the merger requests. Today's action of effectively merging four of the six departments in question deepens the constitutional and political crisis in the country.


Anonymous said...

de This news from IRNA said the Majlis obviously approved it.

Nader Uskowi said...

The IRNA piece here covers Larijani’s report on what Ahmadinejad and Larijani had agreed in the presence of the supreme leader, namely that the government will send a bill to Majlis on the merger and on the new minsters. We have covered that agreement extensively in previous posts. But despite the agreement, and hours after that, Ahmadinejad dismissed three ministers, saying the dismissals were necessary as their departments were merged into other departments, and then named the heads of those other departments as caretaker ministers for the merged entities, effectively going ahead with the mergers without Majlis approval. This is the issue here, not the original agreement between the two branches.

Anonymous said...

As predicted by some peoples here, Assad trying to bait Israel to attack and thus save his own arse!

Internal strife in Iran government, time to order Hizbollah to attack Israel, that should solve all Iran & Syria's leaders problems!

Anonymous said...

LaRJani said in this interview

there is no problem with dismissing of 3 ministers, That is authorit of president

Anonymous said...


This is becoming a contentous issuw now. PressTV just pulished the following:

And I quote:

"Senior Iranian lawmaker Mohammad-Reza Bahonar says President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's decision to relieve three ministers of their responsibilities is illegal.

Earlier this week, the Iranian government announced plans to merge the ministries of Roads and Transportation with Housing and Urban Development, Energy with Oil, Industries and Mines with Commerce, and Welfare and Social Security with Labor and Social Affairs.

In three separate decrees on Saturday, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad dismissed Welfare Minister Sadeq Mahsouli, Minister of Mines and Industries Ali Akbar Mehrabian and Oil Minister Massoud Mirkazemi from their posts according to the 53rd article of the Fifth Five-Year Development Plan.

On Sunday, Bahonar said he has informed Ahmadinejad in a letter that ending the ministers' mission by invoking the 53rd article of the Fifth Development Plan is illegal.

“According to the law, the president has the right to dismiss his ministers,” Fars News Agency quoted Bahonar as saying on Sunday.

Bahonar added that Ahmadinejad's argument, however, that the ministers' mission had ended because their respective miniseries had been dissolved is not legal.

“No new ministry can be established unless Majlis approves the mandate of the new ministries.”

Bahonar said he had also written to three ministers and informed them that “you are ministers unless you are impeached by Majlis or dismissed by the president but if the president says we do not have a ministry and therefore you are no longer ministers this is illegal.”

On Monday, Ahmadinejad introduced Minister of Commerce Mehdi Ghazanfari and Minister of Labor and Social Affairs Abdolreza Sheikholeslam as caretaker Ministers of Mines and Industries, and Welfare and Social Security.

According to Iran's Fifth Five-Year Development Plan (2010-2015), the Iranian government is obliged to reduce its ministries form 21 to 17 to officially improve the efficiency of state administration."

So there we have confrontation on all sides.

One side Ahmadinejad and his supporters and on the other side the Supreme Leader/Imam Zaman plus the cronies in the Majlis.

The question is who is legitimate and who is not. Under international law all this bunch from Super Leader, Majlis deputies and the president have acquired their position through prvilleged positions. None can claim legitimacy. I have some sympathy with Mashayei. At least he seems to put Iran ahead the Islamic/religious stuff that have no relevance in 21st Century world. Iran is much better off with its own unquie identity than borrowing a backward ideology that has brought nothing but shame to Iran.

Nader Uskowi said...

Anon 11:08 AM,

It is true that the president can fire any number of his ministers at anytime he so chooses. The issue was not the dismissals in themselves, but the reason given by the president: that those three ministers were dismissed because their departments were merged into others. Larijani's comments that you are referring to came before Ahmadinejad's office published the letter to the three ministers explaining why they were dismissed. Soon after the letters were published, as we covered it, the deputy speaker of Majlis (Bahonar) took issue with the Ahmadinejad's, saying any mergers or elimination of a cabinet-level department requires approval by Majlis.

Thanks for following up the story so closely. It is indeed an important story.

shirazi said...

The issue was not to do with the dismissals per se, but the fact that Ahmadinejad did not seek majlis aproval.

Surely this was solved after Ahmadinejad met with Larijani? Therefore with Majlis approval.

I am sure the meeting would have been conclusive.

Anonymous said...

(Get ready for it ... um, about the new Oil/Energy Ministry, the president says)

'Well, currently, I'm the supervisor.'

No wonder he didn't announce it with the others yesterday. Easy, undisturbed access to the main resource. Incredible, isn't he?

Anonymous said...

The Mohammad-Reza Bahonar is enemy of ahmadi nejad.
for him is everything what president doing , illegal
but he does not talk for majlis

Nader Uskowi said...

Bahonar being an Ahmadinejad's enemy says a lot: he was one of the staunchest supporters of Ahmadinejad during the elections. The transformation shows how Ahmadinejad has great many of his conservative supporters.

Nader Uskowi said...

Please read the last sentence as; The transformation shows how Ahmadinejad has lost great many of his conservative supporters.

Alborz said...

it is not relevant if this or that group supports or does not support ahmadi nejad.

the struggle für his succession starting.

we have about 2 years to the next election