Iran's most outspoken female politician, Faezeh Hashemi has described President Ebrahim Raisi and many other officials as unqualified for positions they occupy.

In an interview with Etemad Online on the occasion of the Iranian New Year published on Monday, Hashemi levelled some serious criticism and accusations at Raisi and his administration.

She argued that Raisi's managers and aides are mainly non-experts and populist figures whose ideas are against women and harmful to Iran's development, and this makes her concerned.

Faezeh Hashemi, who is the daughter of former President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, charged that Raisi has put Iran back on the same track that was laid by populist former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Hashemi has been outspoken against many policies of the Islamic Republic since her father was sidelined by Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei more than a decade ago and her family put under pressure.

Expressing her ideas about the most successful Iranians of the year, Hashemi maintained that "there were no successful politicians last year. They mainly repeated their usual mistakes. But I dare say that women, the underprivileged and all those who took to the streets to put forward their demands from the government were influential figures."

Hashemi's solution for getting rid of populism was prioritizing expertise over pretending to be a revolutionary. However, she argued there was no hope in reform, saying that "Iran's [establishment] reformists are in comma."

Faezeh Hashemi among supporters. Undated

Asked about the worst and best events of the previous year, Ms. Hashemi said: "The worst thing that happened in the last Iranian year was that Iran stood with Russia and the Taliban and whitewashed their mischiefs. It was also bad that we had an "engineered" presidential election, more people died in custody, and the Judiciary did nothing to combat ‘honor killings.’ At the same time, there were more lies and populist policies and Iranians had to face more economic hardship."

"Covid vaccination after months of delays…the people's refusal to vote in an engineered election, the women's movement’s opposition to compulsory hijab, preventing the parliament to restrict Internet access and Iranians' activism on social media were among the good events of the past year," she said.

Asked what grade she would give the Raisi administration on a scale of zero to twenty, she said: "Even a 2 would be too much." However, she acknowledged that there are still moderate voices in the parliament that oppose radicalism.

In another development, conservative politician and former lawmaker Mansour Haghighatpour, assessed the performance of the parliament (Majles) during the past year in an interview with Nameh News website. He said the parliament lacked the expertise required to deal with the country's urgent problems. He charged that most Iranian lawmakers lack experience and expertise and behave in a naive way. He argued that a policy of putting younger people in parliament backfired because of their lack of knowledge and experience.

Haghighatpour questioned the parliament's ability to make sound economic decisions in particular, mentioning examples in budgetary matters.

Like many other current and former lawmakers, Haghighatpour, who is close to former Majles Speaker Ali Larijani, said the weakest point of the current parliament is its poor performance in supervising the presidential administration. "The government plans every move by itself and carries them out without seeking the parliament's views."

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