Monday, 16 May 2011

Iran: Ahmadinejad sacks three ministers

Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has sacked three ministers as part of a bigger plan to merge several ministries. The country's Oil Minister Masoud Mirkazemi was one of the officials removed from office. In a televised address, Ahmadinejad said: “The Iranian government and Parliament (Majlis) have consensus on the Oil Ministry merger…I am the caretaker for the Oil Ministry.”

Iranian authorities have said that the decision to merge ministries was based on a “legal duty” and pointed out that the country's government is obligated to implement the law in view of “executive and scientific” obligations.

The three ministries to undergo mergers include: the ministry of Roads and Transportation to be merged with Housing and Urban Development; Energy with Oil; Industries and Mines with Commerce; and Welfare and Social Security with Labor and Social Affairs.

On Saturday 14th May, Ahmadinejad issued three decrees dismissing Welfare Minister Sadeq Mahsouli, Minister of Mines and Industries Ali Akbar Mehrabian and Mirkazemi in accordance to the 53rd article of the Iran's Five-Year Development Plan.

The plan stipulates that Iranian government is expected to downsize its ministries form 21 to 17 if it's to improve the efficiency of state administration.

Sources: Press TV, Business Week, Bloomberg, AFP

For more news and expert analysis about Iran, please see Iran Strategic Focus.

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