Iran’s President Ebrahim Raisi at the parliament

Iran Lawmakers Increase Attacks On Government, Demand Efficiency

Thursday, 04/27/2023

A member of the Iranian parliament's national security committee says 95 percent of lawmakers regret having called on Ebrahim Raisi to run for President in 2021.

Characterizing the Raisi administration as "a generally weak government," Shahryar Heidari told Khabar Online website on Wednesday, April 26 that the lawmakers who advocated Raisi's candidacy in the presidential election wish to apologize to the Majles (parliament) and the nation for their decision.

Heidari particularly criticized the government's economic team and characterized it as "inefficient." He said: "During the past days, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei told the Majles once again that the country's number one priority is solving economic problems."

MP Shahryar Heidari

He added that the parliament's criticism of Raisi is mainly about his economic performance. "He needs to reshuffle his economic team and if he fails to do this, the Majles has to do something about it," Heidari said.

Since Raisi took office in August 2021, Iran’s economic crisis has worsened, with the national currency losing half its value, inflation skyrocketing and food prices increasing by at least 70 percent.

Speaking about the planned impeachment of Industry Minister Reza Fatemi Amin, Heidari said he would agree with the motion if he were to be replaced by a more efficient individual, but if someone even weaker than him will take over, the impeachment would be useless.

Minister of Industry, Mines and Trade Reza Fatemi Amin

Meanwhile, Ghasem Saedi, a senior member of the parliament told Rouydad24 news website that the government's performance in the area of the economy has ruined individuals' and businesses' psychological security. Saedi added that the government cannot protect its social capital (legitimacy) merely by chanting slogans.

Saedi said that the people have many complaints about their economic and financial problems adding that they are disturbed and angry. He said: "Once we used to say that the people are unhappy about the 30-percent annual inflation rate, but now inflation rises between 10 to 30 percent during one month and this has robbed Iranian families of their power to plan for their lives."

Lawmakers have been telling the government for months that the government's approach to the management of the society's economy is not acceptable, Saedi maintained. The economy has been the country's main problem for at least a decade now, he added. The only way out of the current problem is appointing efficient and intelligent economic officials. The government should not remain hostage to its odd political ideology, he said. However, the question is why inefficient individuals have been appointed to key decision-making positions?

In another development, in line with parliamentary complaints about the inefficiency of government ministers, deputy from Tabriz, Ahmad Alirezabeigi told Rouydad24 that Fatemi Amin, the Industry Minister whose impeachment is on the agenda of the Majles, had earlier given 70 or 75 SUV vehicles to lawmakers to give up their motion to impeach him. However, both Alirezabeigi and Saedi reiterated that this time the members of the parliament are adamant to impeach the minister and remove him from his post.

Alirezabeigi further called on the Majles presidium, that put aside the previous impeachment from the parliament's agenda, to explain whether the vehicles given to some lawmakers were the reason why the impeachment motion did not go further.

Meanwhile, Alirezabeigi dismissed claims by other lawmakers that Khamenei's recent statement about putting an end to disputes between the three powers of the government meant that he had ordered the Majles to stop the impeachment of the Industry Minister. 

The lawmakers' heightened attacks on the government, might be a tactic by the members of the parliament to distance themselves from the inefficient government during their last year in the Majles, in a bid to increase the chance of their re-election.

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