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Iran Parliament must OK ministries merger

Iran Materials 12 May 2011 12:05 (UTC +04:00)
Iran's Guardian Council (GC) has underscored the role of the country's Parliament to endorse new ministers amid a row between the government and Parliament over ministries merger.
Iran Parliament must OK ministries merger

Iran's Guardian Council (GC) has underscored the role of the country's Parliament to endorse new ministers amid a row between the government and Parliament over ministries merger, Press TV reported.

"Ministers of new or merged ministries are regarded as new ministers and are required to obtain votes of confidence from Majlis (Parliament)," said Head of Iran's Guardian Council Ahmad Jannati in a letter to Parliament's Speaker Ali Larijani.

The letter referred to Article 133 of the Islamic Republic of Iran's Constitution and added that Parliament need to approve any change in the legal duties and the merger of two or more ministries, Parliament news agency (ICANA) reported.

It pointed out that no change should be made in responsibilities and authorities of former ministers and ministries ahead of the Parliament endorsement.

On Tuesday, May 10, Larijani warned against the "heavy costs" of the government's plan to merge ministries before the Parliament approval, calling for an end to the "illegal" move.

The top Iranian parliamentarian emphasized that ministers who have obtained the Parliament vote of confidence should remain in their posts before dismissal.

Larijani's remarks came a day after the announcement of a government plan for the merger of 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.

However, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Wednesday defended the government's plan, saying the measure was legal and in line with the Fifth Five-Year Development Plan.

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

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