TEHRAN, Oct. 19 (Press Shia Agency) – Amid speculations in the media on possible change to Cabinet in recent days, President Rouhani began to reshuffle his cabinet with appointing acting ministers.
Ali Asghar Fani whose resignation or dismissal was in the center of much media speculation, upon hearing the forthcoming news of changes, sent a letter to Rouhani to welcome any changes into his fellow ministry.
Akbar Ranjbarzadeh, Member of Parliament Presiding Board told reporters on Wednesday that Mr. Fani’s impeachment was planned for upcoming Tuesday; “we requested a specific date of impeachment from the Ministry of Education, to which the answer was that impeachment case was over, foreshadowing the imminent changes into the ministry which would have been fateful for Fani,” he added. “President Rouhani received the letter only to dismiss Fani and appoint Seyed Mohammad Bathaei, Fani’s deputy, as acting minister (caretaker minister).”
The wave of reforming the cabinet swept also Ministry of Culture, where Mr. Abbas Salehi, Ali Jannati’s cultural affairs deputy will sit in a chair formerly claimed by his boss within few days. By the time Mehr News received the story, the appointment directive had not been communicated to Jannati. Mr. Salehi however participated in his routine duties on Wednesday. As it was speculated Mr. Jannati resigned from a post he held for 3 years. He had been absent from his office since the day before Tuesday. Along with Mahmoud Goudarzi and Ali Asghar Fani, Jannati refrained from sitting in Cabinet meeting of Wednesday.
Earlier this summer, the changes to the cabinet were on the horizon, with Mr. Rouhani seeing his campaign promises forlorn, and the ever-increasing demand by the majority of his voters in presidential elections of June 2013 that some ministers especially Ali Jannati would not fit Rouhani’s clear rhetoric to defend the rights of the nation and secure execution of the Constitution.
The attempt to reshuffle the cabinet by Rouhani in a year before presidential elections, would highlight his foresight in restoring some prestige to his cabinet and accordingly to his future election campaign where many, including some pessimistic moderates, feared that Rouhani would be the first sitting president to leave the post by the next elections in the history of the Islamic Republic. Yet the changes do not address economic woes the government has been criticized for especially after implementation of JCPOA which despite government’s propganda failed to bring flourishment to economy due to lack of commitment of the US in allowing banking transactions.