Adel Abdel Mahdi sworn in as new prime minister in the Iraqi parliament
Adel Abdel Mahdi was sworn in as Iraq's new prime minister on Wednesday night. The Iraqi parliament also voted to approve 14 ministers, out of the 22 member cabinet, nominated by Abdel Mahdi.
Iran Press / Middle East: With the approval of the Iraqi parliament, Mohammed Ali al-Hakeem was elected as as minister of foreign affairs, Thamer Ghadhban became oil minister and veteran Kurdish politician Fuad Hussein was sworn in as the finance minister, Naim al-Rubaye as communication minster, Alaa al-Alwani as minister of health, and Abdullah Luaibi as transport minister, according to a PressTV report.
Ahmed Riyadh (minister of youth and sports), Bassem al-Rubaye (minister of labour and social affairs), Luay al-Khatteeb (minister of electricity), Mohammed Hashim (minister of trade), Jamal al-Adili (minister of water resources), Salih Abdullah Jabouri (minister of industry), Saleh al-Hassani (minister of agriculture), and Bangin Rekani (minister of housing and reconstruction) were the other ministers approved by the parliament.
In this voting session however, many posts including some key ministerial positions, such as the position of defence minister, were left unfilled.
Out of the 22-member cabinet proposed by the 76-year-old prime minister, 14 picks won a vote of confidence, but the parliament did not make any decision about the rest, including the ministers of interior and defence.
After the session, Mohammed Rikan Hadeed al-Halbousi, the speaker of Iraq's parliament announcing the official end of the meeting, said that the next session of parliament to vote for the rest of the ministers will be held on 6 November.
On 3 October, four months after parliamentary elections in Iraq, two coalition blocs emerged with real chances of forming a majority faction within the parliament -- Nouri al-Maliki's state-of-the-law bloc, and the head of Popular Mobilisation Forces, Hadi al-Ameri's al-Fath bloc.
It seems that disagreements between various electoral coalitions and blocs prevented the parliament from voting on these eight remaining cabinet positions.
Adel Abdel Mahdi was tasked with forming a new government and a new cabinet by the country's president, "Barham Saleh".
Before voting on the remaining eight posts could take place, lawmakers from Muqtada al-Sadr's bloc Sairoon, Haider al-Abadi's Nasr Alliance, Vice-President Ayad Allawi's Wataniya, and Sunni Muslim blocs left the room, arguing that they were not satisfied with the rest of the candidates.
During the Wednesday session, some MPs reportedly accused proposed ministers of corruption.
PM Abdul-Mahdi faces the daunting task of rebuilding much of the country after a devastating war against Daesh terrorists, as well as solving acute economic problems and power and water shortages.
The premier on Wednesday detailed his agenda for the next four years in a 122-page document, which lists plans for developing the war-torn country, settling differences with the Kurdistan Regional Government, boosting the economy and reducing poverty.
In terms of security, he said all arms must be in the hands of the state, rejecting “semi-states” within the country. He also vowed his government would resolve electricity problems by the summer of 2019.
Millions of Iraqis voted on May 12 in their first parliamentary election since the defeat of the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group (ISIS), but a contentious recount process delayed the announcement of final results until August.
Sadr's Sairoon bloc came first in the polls, while the Fatah Alliance led by Hadi al-Amiri, and Abadi's Nasr finished second and third respectively.