Kadhimi appoints interim leadership for vacant ministries
Iraq’s new Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi has appointed himself and six ministers from his newly established cabinet to temporarily fill the ministerial posts not yet chosen by Iraqi Parliament.
The appointees were revealed by Iraqi state media Tuesday in a decree dated to May 8 from the prime minister’s office, just a day after Kadhimi was sworn-in as prime minister.
According to the decree, Kadhimi has ordered Education Minister Ali Hamid to act as interim trade minister, Higher Education and Technology Minister Nabil Kadhim to act as interim justice minister, and Transport Minister Nasir Hussein to act as interim migration and displacement minister.
The prime minister has also ordered Finance Minister Ali Allawi and Adnan Darjal, minister of sports and youth to take charge of the oil and culture ministries respectively.
As for the foreign ministry, PM Kadhimi will take matters into his own hands until further notice.
Of the 20 names Kadhimi put before a vote at Iraqi Parliament, 15 were approved and five rejected, including Ali Nawar Nasif for the post of trade minister, Hashim Salih for the culture minister, Ali Ismael for the agriculture minister, Hikmat Nasir for migration and displacement minister, as well as Mustafa Abdulrahman, a prominent Kurdish politician and former governor of Kirkuk, for the post of justice minister.
The vote for the foreign and oil ministers was delayed until further notice.
Only one Kurdish minister, the Kurdistan Democratic Party’s (KDP) Nazanin Mohammed, has been to Kadhimi’s cabinet as of yet. Of the seven vacant positions, Kurds are inevitably going to be appointed to two additional posts in Kadhimi’s completed cabinet as has been decided in power-sharing agreements in the past.
Many Kurdish and Iraqi officials have predicted that the post of the foreign minister will inevitably go to another KDP candidate, most notably Fuad Hussein who served as finance minister under Adil Abdul Mahdi’s former cabinet.
It is also likely that the position of justice minister will also go to a Kurd.
When completed, Kadhimi’s proposed cabinet is to include 12 ministers from Shiite parties, six from Sunni parties, three from Kurdish parties, and one from a minority group, according to Dana Katib, a KDP member of parliament in Baghdad. Source