Confirmation Votes for New Ministers Next Week

Confirmation Votes for New Ministers Next WeekConfirmation Votes for New Ministers Next Week

With the official receipt of President Hassan Rouhani's letter to the Majlis nominating replacements for top posts in three ministries, the nominees have until next Tuesday to appear before parliament to demonstrate their competence for the posts and win confirmation votes.

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.

The move, which was described as a partial reshuffle of the Cabinet to improve its efficiency, came as a surprise to political circles, as only eight months are left from the first term of the incumbent administration.

Iranian presidents are elected to a four-year term and are allowed to be in office for eight consecutive years. The next presidential election will be held on May 19, 2017.

"The president's letter naming Seyyed Reza Salehi Amiri, Masoud Soltanifar and Fakhreddin Ahmadi Danesh-Ashtiani as nominees for the ministries of culture, sports and education [respectively] has been received in the Majlis," said Gholamreza Kateb, a principlist member of the Majlis Presiding Board on Tuesday, IRNA reported.

Majlis Speaker Ali Larijani said the confirmation sessions for the three nominees will be held next week.

As per the law, the nominees have one week to come to the parliament after the official receipt of the letter.

All the three hopefuls have once faced a vote of no-confidence in the previous principlist-dominated Majlis in 2013.

Salehi Amiri, 55, the head of 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 Wednesday, the president issued separate decrees appointing Mohammad Bothaei, Abbas Salehi and Nassrollah Sajjadi as caretakers of education, culture and sports.

The caretakers can serve in their posts for a maximum of three months.

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