People, Environment

Need for Experts in City Council

Need for Experts in City CouncilNeed for Experts in City Council

A top official at the Department of Environment has urged voters to elect those with relevant technical expertise and educational background to city councils.

City council elections in Iran will be held on May 19, alongside the highly-anticipated presidential elections.

Speaking to ISNA, Mohammad Darvish, director of the Public Participation Office at the Department of Environment, said there is a dire need in city councils for experts in fields related to urban management.

“Former sports personalities, artists, actors and even journalists who have nominated themselves risk tainting the reputation of their respective fields. Due to a lack of expertise, they may even worsen the current conditions of their cities,” he said.

Darvish said people with expertise in economics, environment, urban management and sociology are theoretically well-equipped to manage major cities like Tehran.

Public opinion, particularly in the Iranian capital Tehran, about city council members took a dive following the fiery collapse of the historic Plasco Building in downtown Tehran in January as a result of gross mismanagement on the part of the municipality and city council.

A number of successful former sportsmen, who won major international awards in their respective fields, have been elected to Tehran City Council. They capitalized on their fame to get into the council, although they lack the knowledge and expertise to manage the city.

Darvish, himself a popular figure among environmentalists for being outspoken, criticized the council for failing to implement important environmental measures.

“Source separation (of waste) is still not practiced here and only a handful of dedicated bicycle lanes are in place,” he said, adding that environmental policies employed by both sitting and past councils rarely proved effective, as can be seen by the current state of the city.

Darvish urged people to vote for those qualified and avoid electing people “based on their political leanings and fame”.


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