MPs fault nomination of acting deputy ministers
KABUL (Pajhwok): The appointment of acting deputy ministers is in conflict with the law, some members of the Wolesi Jirga said on Monday, reminding the government to refer cabinet picks to the lower house.
Following his swearing-in some two months backs, President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani issued a decree asking all ministers and governors to continue working in acting capacity.
He had promised introducing new ministers to the house in 25 days for a vote of confidence, a vow that has not been honoured so far. Under the relevant rule, an acting minister cannot work for more than two months.
Last night, the president announced the new Council of Ministers would be unveiled in the next two to four weeks."The incoming cabinet will be comprised of people who were not part of the previous Council of Ministers.”
Ghani said the cabinet picks would be introduced gradually over the next two to four weeks to parliament. “We will work closely for the introduction of the new ministers," he pledged, referring to consultations with the CEO.
Irfanullah Irfan, the Wolesi Jirga deputy secretary, told Pajhwok Afghan News nominating deputy ministers was inconsistent with the law. “Only a minister can be allowed to work in acting capacity for two months.”
In line with the constitution, he argued, the unity government should have referred cabinet nominees to the assembly for the trust vote. “When an acting minister can’t perform well, his deputy can’t be expected to do so.”
Rangina Kargar, a lawmaker from Faryab province, also believed the Ghani administration should have referred cabinet nominees to the lower house after the expiry of the two-month period.
About the nomination of acting deputy ministers, she said: “This is an illegal act, but we have to endorse the choices now that we no longer recognise acting ministers.” She was unsure the president would keep his promise of naming ministers in a month.
Kargar claimed: “As far as I know, differences persist between the president and the chief executive on nomination of the new cabinet. We can assume they won’t be able to make the nominations soon.”
Her colleague from Herat province, Ghulam Farooq Majrooh, accused the rulers of escaping from the law by naming acting deputy ministers. Instead, he thought, the government should have named ministers-designate.
Another MP from Kunduz province, Shukria Paikan, feared the nomination of acting deputy ministers would further complicate the problems facing Afghanistan. “Our problems won’t go away as long as a professionally sound cabinet isn’t unveiled.”
She opined the acting cabinet members could not deal with different problems, as they were not accountable to the house. She also saw a rift within the government on the issue.
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