3 Ministerial Nominees Proposed

3 Ministerial Nominees Proposed

President Hassan Rouhani nominated replacements for top posts in three ministries, in a partial reshuffle of the Cabinet to improve its efficiency.
The appointments came after ministers of sports, culture and education, Mahmoud Goudarzi, Ali Jannati and Ali Asghar Fani respectively, tendered their resignations last week, after serving for over three years, and Rouhani officially accepted their resignations on Friday.
In a letter to Majlis Speaker Ali Larijani, the president proposed Seyyed Reza Salehi Amiri, Masoud Soltanifar and Fakhreddin Ahmadi Danesh-Ashtiani as nominees for the ministries of culture, sports and education respectively.
The president's nominations were officially acknowledged in an open session of the Majlis on Sunday, ISNA reported.
Hossein Ali Amiri, the president's deputy for parliamentary affairs, said the nominees will come to parliament next week to demonstrate their competence and win confirmation votes.
Late Wednesday, the president issued separate decrees appointing Mohammad Bothaei, Abbas Salehi and Nassrollah Sajjadi as caretaker ministers of education, culture and sports.
Under the Constitution, the president must appoint caretakers for the ministries whose ministers have resigned or been dismissed, and the caretaker ministers can serve in their posts for a maximum of three months.
Goudarzi won the parliament's vote of confidence in November 2013 as Rouhani's fourth nominee for the Ministry of Sports and Youth.
Jannati was chosen the culture minister as the first nominee in August 2013.
Fani took the office as acting minister in August 2013 after Mohammad Ali Najafi failed to win the parliamentary approval. He was nominated for the post by Rouhani and was voted for by the parliament in October 2013.
Last week, a motion for the impeachment of Fani had been announced in the parliament, in the second attempt to remove him from office and the first challenge for Rouhani's administration in the new, more government-friendly Majlis. The impeachment session was to be held next Tuesday.

***Seeking Second Chance
All the three hopefuls have once failed to secure the vote of confidence in the previous principlist-dominated parliament in 2013.
Salehi Amiri, 55, the head of he National Library and Archives Organization, was first proposed for the Sports and Youth Ministry but was not confirmed, just like another nominee for the same ministry, Soltanifar.
Soltanifar, 57, was later assigned by the president to head the Cultural Heritage, Handcrafts and Tourism Organization.
Ahmadi Danesh-Ashtiani, 61, was also rejected by the Majlis for the Science Ministry.
Last week, there were speculations that Economic Affairs and Finance Minister Ali Tayyebnia and Industries, Mining and Trading Minister Mohammad Reza Nematzadeh will also step down from their posts, which were denied.
The partial reshuffling of the Cabinet came as a surprise to political circles, as only eight months are left from the term of the incumbent administration.
The tenure of the current administration, the 11th since the Islamic Revolution of 1979, ends in July 2017.
Iranian presidents are elected to a four-year term and are allowed to be in office for eight consecutive years.


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