Majlis Splinter Group Will Erode Public Trust

Majlis Splinter Group Will Erode Public TrustMajlis Splinter Group Will Erode Public Trust

A political activist warned those elected to parliament in the February vote against betraying the public trust by breaking their pledge of allegiance to the factions they supported during their electoral campaign.

The warning by Kamal Pirmoazzen came after dozens of lawmakers broke ranks with reformist and conservative camps to form an independent splinter group.

"Lawmakers are expected to show honesty in action and words regarding what they agreed in negotiations to join the lists of candidates before the elections. Otherwise, the valuable social capital of popular voter turnout for the next elections would be dealt a severe blow," Pirmoazzen told ISNA on Sunday.

Candidates of the so-called "Hope List", fielded by a coalition of reformists and moderates, had a strong showing against conservative contenders in the legislative polls on February 26 and the following runoffs on April 29.

They swept all the 30 seats exclusive to the capital Tehran in the 290-member parliament.

They also made gains, though not as impressive, in other cities.

Some members of the coalition and the rival conservative camp have now registered a separate 80-strong faction in the Majlis.

"Those who joined the Hope List to win the people's vote and now have formed the independent faction have triggered the public alienation from the ballot box," said Pirmoazzen, who previously served as lawmaker.

Members of the new faction claim that they will pursue a moderate agenda.

"Definitely, any group in the Majlis that stands against the Hope List will be considered neither reformist nor moderate," the reform-minded activist said.

Pirmoazzen said a stronger reformist-moderate faction would amount to a more popular and effective parliament.

  Lack of Commitment

In relevant remarks, a former reformist lawmaker noted that the breakaway lawmakers have violated a letter of commitment they signed to be included in the list.

"A plan had been drawn up and all the people on the list signed a pledge to remain committed to the plan and do their utmost and use their legislative mandate to help its implementation," Elaheh Kulaei added.

She described the lawmakers' act as "an obvious sign of indifference and lack of commitment to those who voted in favor of the Hope List," stressing that people regard such a behavior as "inappropriate."

Another ex-lawmaker called the splinter group "unreliable."

"Those who abandoned their party loyalty cannot be relied on in decision-making," Mohammad Ali Esfanani said, adding that they may support the agenda of the newly-formed faction for now, but can later shift their allegiance again.